ATP Finals: Novak Djokovic beats Juan Martin del Potro in semis

Final of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals

  • Venue: O2 Arena, London
  • Date: Monday, 12 November
  • Start time: 20:00

Coverage: BBC TV: Live on BBC Three & BBC HD from 19:30 GMT; BBC Radio: Live on 5 live sports extra; BBC Sport website and mobiles: Streamed online with live text commentary

Novak Djokovic proved his powers of recovery once again by fighting back to beat Juan Martin del Potro in the semi-finals of the ATP World Tour Finals.

The world number one came back from a set and break down to win 4-6 6-3 6-2 at London's O2 Arena.

With the year-end top ranking assured, the Serb now has the chance to cap 2012 with his second season-ending title.

Djokovic will face Roger Federer in Monday's final after the Swiss beat Andy Murray in the second semi-final.


"It was almost a match of two halves. For a set-and-a-half, Del Potro played unbelievable tennis. He dominated the baseline exchanges, he was dominating on serve. He got a set and a break up, but when Djokovic broke back straight away, he got the momentum and won 11 of the last 14 games. That's the response you expect from a world number one. I think Del Potro has the ability, but he needs to build up his stamina if he is to challenge the world's top four."

Read Tim Henman's full analysis of Novak Djokovic's 'special' season here

"I believed that I could come back," said Djokovic. "I believed that I could turn this match around in my favour and I've done so.

"I've played, from that moment on when I got the break back, very flawless tennis. That makes me very happy and also confident before the final."

Djokovic had come through the round-robin stage with three wins and was keen to stress that his desire to take the title outdid any end-of-season fatigue.

However, the sight of Del Potro repeatedly winding up arguably the biggest forehand in the game would have been enough to excuse any opponent pining for the off-season.

Del Potro blasted his way to safety with his two trademark shots - a big serve and a thunderous forehand - when facing early break points, and Djokovic was soon being forced out of his comfort zone in the baseline exchanges.

A woeful attempt at a smash in game seven suggested the pummelling was having an effect and for the next six games it was all Del Potro - a running forehand winner getting him two break points at 4-4 and another heavy blow from that side converting the second.

The first set was wrapped up after 47 minutes and things looked bleak for Djokovic at the start of the second set as the assault continued from across the net.

Del Potro narrowly failed to break in the opening game but made amends at the next opportunity, setting up three more break points at 0-40, and this time the world number one succumbed.

Match stats

Djokovic Del Potro





1st serves



Double faults



Total points won



1st serve win %



2nd serve win %



Receiving pts won



Break points


Far from signalling the end of the contest, however, it prompted a repeat of Djokovic's group stage match against Murray as the Serb found his best game in adversity.

He hit back immediately to level at 2-2, and suddenly the effects of Saturday's win over Federer appeared to take their toll on Del Potro.

With his energy levels apparently dipping, the sixth seed's second serve became vulnerable to Djokovic's fearsome return and the unforced errors began to rise.

Djokovic racked up eight of 10 games as he took control of the match, levelling at one and getting the decisive break - to love - to lead 2-1 in the third.

Del Potro was now being mercilessly worked from side to side and the seemingly unstoppable world number one showed he too can hit a screaming forehand to break once again.

A quickfire love service game ended Del Potro's resistance after two hours and 11 minutes and took Djokovic through to his first final at the O2.