Big-hitting American John Isner paid respect to Andy Murray after he was eliminated from Wimbledon by the big-serving American 6-4, 7-6(4), 6-7(3), 6-4 in a second-round match on Wednesday.
Isner, 37, moved closer to Ivo Karlovic’s ATP Tour record for aces with 13,728 while Murray, after coming back from the brink and winning a third set tiebreak, suffered his earliest elimination.
Cheers of “Let’s go Andy, let’s go” reverberated across Centre Court as the roof came off and the hope vanished with the fading of the day. Murray had never previously lost to the American in eight matches.
The 20th seed remarked when the Scot departed the fan court, waving, “I am most definitely not a better tennis player than Andy Murray, I might have just been a bit better than him today.”
“Playing him on this court in front of this audience was a true honor. I have to enjoy these times because of my age. One of my career’s biggest victories was this one “Added he.
“It was a major accomplishment for me to play as well as I did against one of our greatest players in history. We are extremely fortunate that he is still with us because he is a huge inspiration to each and every person in the locker room.”
In the third game of the first set, Isner defeated Murray, and in the following game, when the Scot was swooping in with backhand passes and had two chances to break back immediately, he held service under intense pressure.
The imposing American won the set 6-4 by making the most of his devastating serve, hitting five aces in the process. Murray’s delivery was more inconsistent but still packed a powerful punch.