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U.S. Open 2012: Angry John Isner smashes racket, exits

September 03, 2012|By Diane Pucin
  • John Isner reacts to a lost point in the fourth set against Phillip Kohlschreiber.
John Isner reacts to a lost point in the fourth set against Phillip Kohlschreiber. (Elsa / Getty Images )

NEW YORK — Ninth-seeded John Isner, who was called for a foot-fault during his serve and later angrily smashed a racket, was an upset loser to 19th-seeded Philipp Kohlschreiber of Germany, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, in a fourth-round match at the U.S. Open that began Sunday night and ended at 2:26 a.m. Monday in New York.

As the second week of the biggest tennis tournament in the U.S. gets started, there is only 20th-seeded Andy Roddick and 23rd-seeded Mardy Fish left in the men's singles draw from the United States. And Fish is scheduled to play top-seeded Roger Federer later Monday afternoon. Fish is only 1-8 in his career against Federer.

Isner was so drenched in sweat that he left the court after the fourth set to change his clothes and shoes. But the new outfit couldn't freshen up Isner enough to run down all of Kohlschreiber's shots. Kohlschreiber's win put him into the fourth round of a Grand Slam event for the first time.

"We didn't play one tiebreak, that's pretty amazing," said Kohlschreiber, who verbalized what everyone thought. Usually Isner's big serve means few services and lots of tiebreaks. But Kohlschreiber was perfect in the statistic that mattered the most: He was three for three on break points against Isner.

The match tied a record for latest finish at the tournament. In 1993 Mats Wilander finished beating Mikael Pernfors at the same time.

There had been a rain delay during the evening, and a three-set marathon won by Maria Sharapova, so Isner and Kohlschreiber didn't begin the match until after 11 p.m.

Isner specializes in lengthy matches that push record-setting limits.  He recorded an 11-hour, 5-minute win over Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon in 2010 and a 5-hour, 41-minute loss to Paul-Henri Mathieu at the French Open earlier this year.


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