John Isner can't win this epic marathon match at Wimbledon

LONDON: Kevin Anderson became the first South African man in 97 years to reach the Wimbledon final on Friday after downing John Isner in the second longest Grand Slam singles match ever played. "Time is a flat circle".

Isner was famously apart of the longest match in tennis history. There were thrilling moments, to be sure.

For that reason, they knew one another's game well.

As the fifth set dragged on and on, the American Isner appeared more visibly exhausted and had to survive more scares on his own serve than Anderson. Remarkably, Isner hit straight back and went on to move in front. It's among the trickier shots in men's tennis to handle, not just because of its speed but because it strikes the court from such an extreme height.

Roanic had only been broken three times this Wimbledon previously but Isner doubled that tally alone to triumph 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 6-3.

The hot, dry weather throughout the fortnight favored their games, hardening the sunbaked grass courts.

Another ace from the American saw him level the match in another tiebreak.

That didn't happen through the first 12 games of the last set, with each player holding serve to reach 6-all.

"There's hopefully two more matches still to be played".

Anderson broke through for a 5-3 lead in the third set, ending Isner´s run of serving invincibility at this year´s Wimbledon at 110 games.

The reason the match went on for so long comes down to one of Wimbledon's quirks - a five-set match can not end on a tiebreaker, a tradition shared at the French Open and the Australian Open. Some fans were shocked and awed by the sheer length and absurdity of the contest, while others also voiced a frustration with the first match of the day delaying the real headliner - the semifinal matchup between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

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