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Rolex? Check. Visa emblem? Check.

Looks like two-time 2011 titlelist Juan Martin del Potro is making the most of his sideline time, having signed up to be one of the mascots for Visa‘s sports sponsorship program. (But JFTR, that muscle tear in his left thigh leaves participation at this year’s French up in the air. TSF wishes him a speedy recovery.)

Here’s the Visa landing page.

…and the image on the campaign’s Facebook. (Rough translation: “He’s not controversial, he doesn’t complain, he’s not into gamesmanship, yet he doesn’t go unnoticed.”)

Next time: They can do better than an embroidered dress shirt. How about snapping some papp pics of him shopping with a Black Card?

Visa Deportes: On the Twitter and the Facebook.

(image by Juan Mabromata/AFP/Getty Images)

trophy watch: furry nice to see you



For your vest interest: We were all set and ready to make a trophy-bearing Nole, now 27-0 this season, our lead picture on this week’s Trophy Watch. That was until we saw this gem of a photograph with Arantxa Sanchez-Vicario with Barcelona doubles winners Iveta Benesova and Barbara Zahlova Strycova. We want, Arantxa! She’s holding her 2-year-old daughter … Arantxa. Now that we know you wear fur and have named your child after yourself, we must come to Barcelona and sip champagne with you, ASV. Loves it! Oh right, and Roberta Vinci won the singles crown. See her boring troph(ies) here.

Kissing the fellas: How about that artwork on Juan Martin del Potro‘s Estoril trophy? We sure dig it. The painted (porcelain?) cup is what we’d sip our champagne out of while hanging out with a fur-wearing Arantxa in Barcelona. JMdP overwhelmed Fernando Verdaso 6-2, 6-2 in the men’s final.

No one but Nole: While Novak won his home event for the second time in three years, he was aided by Janko Tipsarevic, a valid challenger who had to skip out of their SF match up because of injury. In the final, Djoko took down Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (4), 6-2.

One more shot of Arantxa in our favorite new outfit and Anabel Medina Garrigues’ crystal bowl in Estoril. [Read more...]

delpo endorses rolex



Looks like Juan Martin del Potro is endorsing Rolex; he’ll join other tennis stars in the watchmaker’s stable (Ana Ivanovic, Justine Henin, Zheng Jie, Li Na, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Roger Federer) by wearing the Datejust watch during press conference and off-court.

Estoril: The Argentinian beat Pablo Cuevas 6-2, 7-6 (6) to reach the final and will face Fernando Verdasco, who made it through after Milos Raonic retired from the semi due to an injured back. (Draws: Estoril Open)

View: Delpo’s Rolex landing page. More: Read up on the Datejust.

(src; screengrab via rolex.com)

one giant through, the other falls



Varying versions of that honeycomb pattern were on the Nike dudes as they showed up for clay events this week. JMdP wore the Green Apple version of the Showdown Movement tee during his first-round win at the Estoril Open, where he needed to beat Portuguese qualifier Pedro Sousa 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 to advance. Delpo has a potential quarterfinal match against top seed Robin Soderling. Draw: Estoril Open.

Buy: Nike Showdown Movement Tennis Top, Green Apple and Tour Yellow, $55, tennisexpress.com.

And in Belgrade, John Isner‘s run at the Serbia Open ended abrubtly with his 6-4, 7-6 (4) loss to Ricardo Mello, who’ll next face Blaz Kavcic. He shares the same quarter as top seed Djokovic. Live scores: Get caught up on the happenings here.

(Isner image via serbiaopen.rs; Delpo image via Getty Images)

del potro pumps up the volume



What an apropos shirt on Juan Martin del Potro, who — even though he fell to Mardy Fish 7-5, 7-6 (5) in the fourth round of this week’s Sony Ericsson Open — has continued to work his way back to the top of the game after last year’s debilitating wrist injury: he followed up two early round losses in Sydney and Melbourne with three semi appearances (San Jose, Memphis, Indian Wells) and a title at Delray Beach. Next week’s rankings should put him just inside the top 50.

Draw: Up next for Fish is a possibility of taking over the top American spot on the ATP (ousting Roddick). He’ll need to defeat David Ferrer to get this done. (Scan: SEO Draws)

We couldn’t find this yellow Nike crew on any retailer’s site, but we’re all about the subtle circles up top and the honeycomb columns on the bottom. Looks like an equalizer display, no? (Update: This is the Showdown Movement Top, $55. The polo version is available at Tennis Express.)

Two shots: More Delpo after the cut…