|(Mark Radswell/Getty Images)|
He was the better player in this match and he won more points in total. But in the end, it was Isner's serve that made the difference. After four hours and 41 minutes (and 43 aces, most of which came in the last two sets), John Isner prevailed 4-6, 6-3, 2-6, 7-6(5), 10-8.
So again, the Australian Open end for David in the second round. What can be taken from this match is that he played some great tennis. And that he was (hopefully) able to finish the match without physical problems.
Next up for David is now the Davis Cup first-round tie against Germany (February 10-12).
That's it from me for the moment. Photos as soon as I've set up my new computer...
|(Getty Images; montage by VD)|
3.23pm local - David's match is now next up on Margaret Court Arena.
David likes to play late. And David also likes to play against opponents who give him a certain rhythm. On Monday, with his first-round match against Nieminen, he got both. This time, he'll get to play on the same court again but in the afternoon, in the heat. And rhythm surely isn't what he's going to get from his opponent, 16th seed John Isner.
It's the third time they meet and David won both of their previous encounters - though in very different ways. At Cincy 2010, he had a lot of problems with Isner's serve but then profited from the American's early retirement. At Auckland last year, however, David was able to handle the serve and could outplay him during the rallies.
Isner has played two matches this year. One at Sydey last week, where he lost to Bobby Reynolds in the second round (after a bye in the first). And the other one in the first round at Melbourne Park where he beat Australian wildcard Benjamin Mitchell (#222) in straights.
In this match, a lot is going to depend on the serve. On how well David will be able to return and force Isner into longer rallies, but also on David's ability to hold his own serve. Especially in the important moments. He will try to entangle Isner in as many rallies as possible, he'll try to move him around. And during the rallies he'll always have a good chance. Still, a lot will depend on the serve...
Note: Due to computer problems there will be no recording and no report of this match. Also because Krystle, who would otherwise cover for me, is in Melbourne at the moment. She'll watch and probably report this match, so I recommend taking a look at her blog.