James Ward given lucky loser spot at Indian Wells
James Ward has been given a lucky loser spot in the BNP Paribas Open after the withdrawal of Juan Martin del Potro.
Last Updated: 11/03/14 8:54am
Ward, 27, who is ranked 160th in the world, will now take on Argentine Del Potro's scheduled second-round opponent Feliciano Lopez on Sunday.
Sixth seed Del Potro, who reached the final of the event last year, has been struggling with a wrist injury.
Ward lost in the final round of qualifying on Wednesday to Paul-Henri Mathieu but stayed at Indian Wells to practise and in the hope of a space in the main draw becoming available.
And his patience has paid off to give him the opportunity to compete in the full draw of an event for the fourth time this season.
The withdrawal will be of concern to Del Potro, who missed the best part of a year in 2010 after having surgery on his right wrist.
And he admitted that he is trying to avoid having to go under the knife this time.
Del Potro said: "My wrist is not in good condition to compete. We are trying to be smart. Sometimes it is better to lose a tournament than to lose a year."