Thursday, June 24, 2010

Isner (American) Defeats Mahut (French) in Epic, Record Obliterating Wimbledon Game

'Epic' does not do this game justice. It is by far the longest game in tennis history lasting three days because play had to be stopped due to darkness twice. The game saw many records smashed to levels I do not expect to see surpassed for a long time. The record for aces was surpassed by both players, roughly 25% for one and almost 50% by the new record holder. The fifth set alone lasted almost a third longer then any other entire tennis game in history. This match really was one for the history books.

Video embedded below.

"When John Isner finally won the longest match in tennis history, he collapsed on the Wimbledon grass and then summoned one last burst of energy, springing to his feet to give his opponent a bear hug.

Isner hit a backhand up the line Thursday to win the last of the match's 980 points, and he beat Nicolas Mahut in the fifth set 70-68.

The first-round marathon took 11 hours, 5 minutes over three days, lasting so long it was suspended because of darkness -- two nights in a row. Play resumed Thursday at 59-all before an overflow crowd on cozy Court 18 and continued for 20 games and 65 minutes before Isner won.

The score that broke the scoreboard at one point: 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (7), 7-6 (3), 70-68.
The match lasted so long because neither player could break serve. Isner finished with 112 aces and Mahut had 103, with both totals eclipsing the sport's previous high of 78. They combined to hold for 168 games in a row.
The fifth set alone took 8 hours, 11 minutes, surpassing the previous longest match, which took 6 hours, 33 minutes at the 2004 French Open.

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