Juan Martin del Potro to play Kooyong week before Australian Open

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Juan Martin del Potro to play Kooyong week before Australian Open

Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro is set to return to the Kooyong exhibition this January. The Argentine hasn't played in Kooyong since 2013. The world No. 5 will be making his third appearance at the well-known Australian exhibition event this January.

Del Potro debuted at the Kooyong event eight years ago in 2010. Back then, the Argentine beat Croatian Ivan Ljubicic in the quarter-final before he was forced to withdraw from his semi-final clash against French Jo Wilfried Tsonga.

Del Potro fell just short of winning it all in his second Kooyong appearance as he ended runner-up to Australian tennis legend Lleyton Hewitt in the 2013 final. The Argentine will use the Kooyong event as his last preparation for the Australian Open as the exhibition is due to take place a week before the first Grand Slam tournament of the season.

"Delpo’ is a big signing for us as he has not been seen too much in Melbourne because of his injuries. He's a heavyweight in the men's game and, despite his injuries, he's built an amazing record. He's an incredible talent," Kooyong Tournament Director Peter Johnston said, per Herald Sun.

The Kooyong exhibition is set for a change as it won't be anymore a four-day event. Johnston made a decision to cut the event from four to three days after talks with players and new broadcaster SBS. Also read: Alexander Zverev and Victoria Azarenka to play World Tennis Challenge