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06/02/2017 07:53 am ET

Devastating French Open Injury Leads To Moment Of True Sportsmanship

Player Nicolas Almagro sobbed as he was forced to quit mid-match, but his opponent was there to comfort him.
Spain's Nicolás Almagro, left, is comforted by Argentina's Juan Martín del Potro as a knee injury forces him to
THOMAS SAMSON via Getty Images
Spain's Nicolás Almagro, left, is comforted by Argentina's Juan Martín del Potro as a knee injury forces him to pull out of their tennis match at the French Open in Paris on Thursday.

When Spanish tennis player Nicolás Almagro broke down after a recurring knee injury again forced him to quit a major tournament mid-match, his opponent stepped up.

Argentina’s Juan Martín del Potro went over to Almagro at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris Thursday to hug the player, who was inconsolable over exiting the French Open.

Del Potro then helped him off the court and sat on the sidelines with Almagro to comfort him further. 

Almagro and del Potro were tied with one set apiece during the second round of the grand slam tournament on Thursday.

As the pair competed for the win, Almagro’s knee gave out, and he was left with no choice but to forfeit the match and exit the tournament. 

Almagro reacts as he realizes he can't finish the match. The player has been fighting a recurring knee injury.
THOMAS SAMSON via Getty Images
Almagro reacts as he realizes he can't finish the match. The player has been fighting a recurring knee injury.

Instead of just observing the moment and moving on into the third round, del Potro went to his opponent’s side, requested water, helped him off the court and shared words of support on the sideline.

“I told him that tennis is important, but health matters more than tennis in this case, because I want him to be out of his bad patch,” del Potro said after the match.

Del Potro offers support to Almagro, who also pulled out of the Italian Open because of a knee injury this month.
THOMAS SAMSON via Getty Images
Del Potro offers support to Almagro, who also pulled out of the Italian Open because of a knee injury this month.

Del Potro, who was due to face Britain’s Andy Murray on Saturday, has suffered from his fair share of injuries as well. The Argentinian player almost skipped the French Open due to back and shoulder issues, according to the Telegraph.

Earlier this month, Almagro’s knee caused him to stop playing against compatriot Rafael Nadal during the Italian Open. The injury occurred early in the first set, less than half-hour into playing.

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