Nadal next as Del Potro sees off Simon

Juan Martin Del Potro set up a Wimbledon fourth-round clash with defending champion Rafael Nadal after knocking out 15th seed Gilles Simon in three tight sets.

Juan Martin Del Potro set up a Wimbledon fourth-round clash with defending champion Rafael Nadal after knocking out 15th seed Gilles Simon in three tight sets.

Resuming after yesterday’s downpour, the match was delicately poised, with Del Potro one set up, but a break down in the second at 4-2.

The Argentinian wasted no time in putting himself on level terms though, quickly breaking his opponent before winning the tie-break with a blistering ace.

Simon, playing his 22nd grand slam, became frustrated with his play towards the end of the second set, often cursing loudly at his inability to match the fierce ground strokes of the former US Open champion.

The third set appeared to heading for another tie-break after Simon upped his game, returning Del Potro’s giant serve with much more control.

The good work came undone in the 11th game of the third though as Simon carelessly flicked a gentle backhand into the net to give Del Potro the break he needed.

The 6ft 6in Del Potro did not disappoint as he served for the match, sealing the game to love with a 126mph ace which Simon did not even attempt to return, winning 7-6 (10/8) 7-6 (7/5) 7-5.

Del Potro’s victory means he will now face Nadal, the man he beat in the third round at Flushing Meadows in 2009 – the year he won the title there.

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