Washington ATP Round up Day 3: John Isner Knocked out, Berdych Through


Thanks to stevegtennis.com

John Isner, the fifth seed, was upset in the round of 32 at the Citi Open in Washington by countryman Steve Johnson. Johnson, ranked 68, won the match 6-7 (5), 6-3, 7-6 (6).

That the match should be decided on a breaker was no surprise, but that Isner should not emerge the winner was. This was one match which proved you are only as good as your second serve. Both men won 89 percent of points behind their first serves, but it was Johnson’s second serve that held up stronger. Serving at only 56 percent to Isner’s 64, Johnson won 68 percent of his second service points; Isner could only manage 43 percent.  Overall, Johnson won 80 percent of his service points to Isner’s 73.

Isner was not only upset by Johnson. He was also upset by the tournament organizers.  The recent Atlanta champion was miffed at having to play on an outside court when he was the top-ranked American and defending finalist.

The loss drops Isner out of the top ten. Meanwhile, Johnson, having a career year, could beat his own career high ATP ranking of 63 reached in June. The American went out in the first round last year and can only gain points.

Another seed upset by a homeboy was Julian Benneteau who was defeated by the once highly-touted Donald Young. Young, ranked 73, beat the 17th seeded Frenchman 6-3, 6-4, taking advantage of the seed’s woeful 43 percent first serve percentage.

But it was not a good day for the other Americans. Rajeev Ram was beaten by 13th seed Vasek Pospisil, Jack Sock lost in two tiebreaks to second seed Milos Raonic, and Robby Ginepri won just five games against top seeded Tomas Berdych. The biggest story though was Sam Querrey’s defeat to Kei Nishikori. The Japanese may be the third seed, but he had lost his three previous matches to the world No.63. He prevailed though in their round of 32 contest, winning 6-4, 5-7, 6-4.

Other players through on day 3 of the Citi Open were sixth seed Richard Gasquet, tenth seed Santiago Giraldo, and Victor Estrella Burgos who continued his great run of form when he beat eighth seed Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (5), 6-4.

Commentary by Christian Deverille

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Christian Deverille

Christian Deverille is a tennis writer with a diploma in Freelance Sports Writing from the London School of Journalism. He loves all things tennis, most of all the Federer and del Potro forehands.

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