John Isner’s run has come to an end. A match after showing tremendous heart against Andy Roddick, the lanky 24 year-old American fell to No.10 seeded Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in four sets 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 over on Louis Armstrong.
He got out to a good start like the other night but couldn’t maintain the level due to Verdasco’s counter punching and variety. The 25 year-old has improved leaps and bounds this year making the semis in Australia before losing an epic battle against countryman Rafael Nadal. His renewed commitment to fitness showed against the first-time fourth rounder as he outhit Isner from the baseline.
When Verdasco wasn’t winning long rallies, he was whipping winners off both sides of the racket past an attacking Isner at net where he never got in rhythm. In fact, he won barely half the points at net going 14-for-27 which couldn’t happen.
Verdasco was more efficient nailing many shots crosscourt for a match best 40 winners. Unlike Roddick, he also stood in taking Isner’s monstrous serve early keeping him in check with 13 aces while he served seven himself. Because he was able to get into points early, the Spanish lefty had excellent success breaking Isner four times in seven chances.
To his credit after falling behind a set, Isner tried to hang in there. But ultimately, Verdasco finally applied enough pressure to earn the one break needed to put it away. He did give the American one opportunity in the eighth game but saved a break point with some solid hitting before holding.
In the 10th game, he had little trouble serving it out drawing a long Isner forehand to secure his place in the quarters where he’ll await the winner between No.4 Novak Djokovic and No.15 Radek Stepanek later tonight.
On tap first at Ashe Stadium is a women’s clash between former 2004 champion Svetlana Kuznetsova (6) and 19 year-old No.9 seed Caroline Wozniacki with a spot in the quarters up for grabs.
Tune into Tennis Channel for coverage of both matches.