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Southern Section Native has Incredible Run in Washington Tourney

August 6, 2007 02:59 PM

Southern Section native and 2007 NCAA finalist, John Isner, had the run of his life this past week at the 2007 Legg Mason Classic in Washington, DC. The pro tour rookie’s fantasy story was halted when he came up short against defending champion Andy Roddick. Roddick ended Isner’s quest for his first career title with a 6-4, 7-6 defeat in the finals.

Isner, a North Carolina native playing in his second ATP tournament, unexpectedly gained entry into the event as a wild card when Fernando Gonzalez withdrew with a sore back. The 22-year-old Isner's matches put him to the test as he squared off with some of the biggest names on the tour and came out on top. The towering Isner wowed the crowds with his 141-mph serve and the endurance that carried him through four consecutive third-set tiebreaks. His first defeat was over Britain’s Tim Henman, then eighth-seeded Benjamin Becker and next Wayne Odesnik.

In the quarterfinals, Isner faced Tommy Haas who is currently ranked No. 12 on the Men’s ATP Tour. After two and a half hours and 30 aces from Isner, the underdog outlasted Haas to take the match 6-4,6-7, 7-6. In the semi-finals, Isner took out Frenchman Gael Monfils to secure his spot in the championship round.

Despite his loss to Roddick, Isner's breakthrough into the big leagues will bring about many changes for the budding superstar. In addition to taking home $43,700 in prize money, he will jump from No. 416 to inside the top 200 in next week's rankings and has been granted a wild card into Cincinnati in two weeks.
 

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