Cincinnati QF preview and prediction: Del Potro vs. Goffin

Tennis By Louis Spencer JR |

It will be two-a-days for most of the players remaining in the Cincinnati draw on Friday. Juan Martin Del Potro and David Goffin have already advanced to set up a quarterfinal showdown later on the schedule.

(11) David Goffin vs. (4) Juan Martin Del Potro

Del Potro and Goffin will be squaring off for the fourth time in their careers when they both play their second matches of the day in the Western & Southern Open quarterfinals on Friday evening. Only two of their previous encounters have been completed, as Del Potro retired in the second set from their Rome Masters meeting a few months ago. They faced each other twice in 2016, with Goffin getting the job done 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 in Shanghai before the Argentine exacted revenge 7-5, 6-3 shortly thereafter in Basel.

This has been an impressive and much-needed Cincinnati run for Goffin, who had been a mere 21-13 during an injury-plagued season prior to this week. The 11th-ranked Belgian has advanced by beating Benoit Paire in three sets in addition to red-hot opponents Stefanos Tsitsipas and Kevin Anderson in straights. Del Potro booked his spot in the quarters by following up a first-round bye with victories over Jeremy Chardy and Nick Kyrgios. An entertaining affair with Kyrgios saw the first two sets split in tiebreakers, but the Australian disappeared in the third as Del Potro cruised 6-2. The world No. 3 and Indian Wells champion is now 34-12 for what has been his most consistent–and, more importantly, one of his healthiest–years on tour.

Even in fine physical shape, however, two matches in one day is far from ideal for Del Potro. Goffin will force him to play plenty of long points and unless Cincinnati’s fourth seed hits his opponent off the court quickly, it may be too long of a day at the office.

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