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Del Potro might skip Australian Open

Buenos Aires, Dec 21 (IANS) Argentine tennis star Juan Martin del Potro has said he might have to skip the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam event of the year, and the Davis Cup tie against Italy.

"If I'm being smart, I know I have 15 days of practice left for Australia and for my first tournament, and that's a goal I'm not going to make, so I may have to give up some time and skip more tournaments at another time to play two tournaments that are important," the 28-year-old said on Tuesday.

Del Potro, a former world No. 4 whose ranking, currently stands at No. 38 due to his many wrist injuries and operations, reports Efe news agency.

Del Potro discussed the two exhibition matches he is scheduled to play this month against Spanish world No. 21 David Ferrer in Buenos Aires province.

In the first exhibition match, Del Potro will take on the 34-year-old Ferrer on December 27 at the DirecTV Arena in Tortuguitas. The two will meet again the next day in Mar del Plata.

The Argentine star said that in addition to taking a pass on the Australian Open, which starts on January 16, he may also have to look at whether to play the ATP event in Delray Beach, Florida, in February.

Last month, Del Potro helped lead Argentina's Davis Cup squad to its first championship in tennis' premier international team event.

Argentina, a four-time Davis Cup finalist, finally won the title this year, defeating Croatia 3-2 in Zagreb.

--IANS

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