TENNIS

Del Potro: Rio silver-medallist handed US Open wild card

The Argentine saw off Novak Djovokic and Rafa Nadal at the Olympics before defeat to Andy Murray in the gold-medal match.

Del Potro: Rio silver-medallist handed US Open wild card
MARCOS BRINDICCI REUTERS

Juan Martín del Potro was on Tuesday rewarded for his dramatic run to the Olympics final with a wild card into the US Open, the tournament where he made his name as champion in 2009.

Victories over Djokovic and Nadal in Rio

The 27-year-old Argentine defied his world ranking of 141 to beat Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal on his way to the Olympic gold-medal match in Rio on Sunday.

After a four-hour marathon final, the exhausted former world number four was defeated by defending champion Andy Murray and had to be content with a silver medal.

Del Potro (left) and Murray embrace after their gold-medal match in Rio.

Wrist-injury woes

Del Potro's career went into a tailspin after his US Open triumph with three wrist surgeries pushing him to the brink of retirement.

The United States Tennis Association also awarded wild cards to Olympic mixed doubles silver medalist Rajeev Ram and American youngsters Bjorn Fratangelo and Frances Tiafoe.

In the women's singles, wild card recipients included Olympic mixed doubles gold medallist Bethanie Mattek-Sands and France's Virginie Razzano.

The US Open, the final Grand Slam of the year, gets underway in New York on 29 August.