Re: Five Matches That Defined Your Favourite Player's 2012 Season
1. Lost to Federer at Australian Open quarterfinals 6-4, 6-3, 6-2
Showed how far off the top players, namely Federer, Del Potro was at the start of 2011. This result was followed by similar beatdowns in Rotterdam and Indian Wells, showed how much work he needed to do.
2. Beat Berdych 7-6, 1-6, 6-3, 7-5 in round 4 of Roland Garros
First match since his comeback where he really hit his FH with same devastating power and metronomic consistency he used to back before surgery. He beat Berdych despite an injured knee and came within a whisker of doing the same against Federer in the following round. He had already got back what he needed to emerge into a threat again.
3. Lost to Federer 6-3, 6-7 (5), 17-19 in Olympic semis
Showed how much progress he had made since the start of the year by reaching the semis at the Olympics and pushing Federer to the very limits on the latter's best surface. It was arguably the match of the year with JMDP giving Federer all he could handle and, despite losing, essentially ending his chances at the gold medal. He showed he belong with the elite again in this match.
4.Beat Djokovic 7-5, 6-4 in Olympic bronze medal match
Confirmed his return to contention by beating the world's best player in an Olympic medal decider in emphatic fashion. A horribly timed left wrist injury set him back during the American hardcourt season but even then he was only derailed by Djokovic, but he'd be back strong in the indoor season.
5.Beat Federer 6-4, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (3) in the Basel final
He desperately needed a win over Federer and he got it in the lion's den no less. He went on to beat Federer again at the World Tour Finals and then narrowly losing the semis to Nole, showing once again he's getting closer to the top guys.