The sleeping gentle giant Delpo seemed to try and force his body to wake up as he tried to battle back, down 2-4 in the first set. Djokovic, however, was already too far ahead and only too willing to rise to the occasion, closing out the first set 6-2 in 39 minutes.
From the outset of the second set the play was of an incredibly bruising intensity with Juan Martin smashing his ground strokes and serving an incredibly high percentage of first serves.
A blistering forehand return winner brought up triple break point for Juan Martin in the opening game of the second set- the Argentine converting on a double fault.
Djokovic’s ability to produce incredibly deep returns and incredible power on full stretch when almost in a side split position kept him in points and allowed him to switch from defense to offense.
The normally understated Delpo, who had his long legs put to the test trying to serve out the set, roared in triumph as he out maneuvered the ever present Novak to stand two points from one set all.
Juan Martin spread the court and ran Novak far and wide forcing the Serbian former world number one so deep into the court that he was almost out of the screen shot. As always Novak maintained his depth of shot and managed to hang tough just long enough to wait for his opponent to push a ball slightly long.
It truly was incredible defense that Novak displayed breaking back to level at five all despite the onslaught of power and brilliant serves coming of the Del Potro racket.
The roaring cries of Djokovic as he leveled the set were a devastating sign for Del Potro as Novak seemed to rip the ball and show flashes of his 2011 brilliance.
Try as he may Del Potro couldn’t hold Novak back even when he threw everything at the world number two, even at times forcing him into a complete side split position.
Djokovic enjoyed the battle later saying, “Even though it was a straight set win, it was much closer than the score indicated. He’s a great player.
Ultimately Delpo just seemed overwhelmed by the consistent depth of shot and the defense of Novak. “It’s not easy when you fire your best weapon and the other guy returns all the serves. It’s difficult when you have in front of you a warrior.
He’s playing better and better every day. He’s the favourite to win this tournament. I saw him playing at a very high level for the three hours in the match and he has intensity to win all the matches.”
Despite the loss Del Potro fans world wide will no doubt have been delighted to see Juan Martin recovering the power and form that made him the 2009 Champion after an extensive injury time out period.