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June 23, 2010

Longest. Set. Ever.

In his first round match with Frenchman Nicolas Mahut, our boy, John Isner, was all even at two sets a piece yesterday when play was suspended.  This morning, the two simply needed to play the final and deciding fifth set to determine the winner.  That set, however, now the longest set in tennis history, still isn't over.  Play was suspended again tonight and Isner and Mahut will return to Court 18 tomorrow until a winner is decided or darkness interrupts again.  At Wimbledon, there are no tiebreakers in the final set, so the players simply keep playing games until someone wins two in a row.  They currently stand at 59-59.  Isner had four match points during the day, but Mahut had an answer for each.

I've seen the word "epic" floated about in describing this match, but that term is inadequate.  The longest match in pro tennis history was six hours and thirty-three minutes.  The fifth set of this match, which I remind you isn't over yet, is currently at seven hours and six minutes.  So, one fifth of this match is longer than the entire match of the former longevity record holder.

It's not epic, it's unbelievable in the most literal way possible.  Isner: "Nothing like this will ever happen again. Ever." The scoreboards not only couldn't handle the numbers of the score, they just plain broke down completely, going utterly dark at 48 all.  Even ESPN's scoretracker couldn't go above 50 games apiece.  The match stats, which I won't bore you with, are enough to skew a data set so irreparably that it becomes nonsensical or comical.  Both players broke the record for aces in a match.

You can follow a highly amusing account of the day at Wimbledon here, heavy on the crisp, dry British wit and highly recommended.

Tomorrow, they begin anew, both players looking for a single break point to capture a deciding advantage.  John Isner is everything you want out of a famous athletic alum.  He's always selling UGA on the tube and is always in a Georgia football hat off court.  Break him, Johnny!



Ball-U-Dawg Triangle said...

That's the best live-blog of a sporting event I've read.

Anonymous said...

Hunker down, you Hairy Dawg!

NRBQ said...

Epic is the only word.

But winning two in a row won't get you the victory, necessarily. If you're one down, you need three. And a single break point is no help.

BTW, I read that in 118 games of the fifth set, there were NO SERVICE BREAKS!

Crane said...

I started watching around 32-32. Battle of the Zombies is about right.

Quinton McDawg said...

Your point about two in a row is right. I was viewing it in the context, though, and if someone gets a break in this match, you would think it to be over considering we haven't seen a single break in 118 games.

Crane said...

Isner on the today show

Tommy said...

It's worth considering whether we should rename ourselves the Isners. Bulldog determination doesn't quite cover the hellbentness of what's going on here.

Andy said...

Dawgs Win!

Anonymous said...

Way to go John! 70-68! And way to go team USA! Ghana's going down.

Side note: The last 24 hours must have been hell for all the ignorant neanderthals who think the only real sports are football and baseball (and basketball or hockey for some).

ColumbiaDawg said...

How about that Dawg!

all school said...

Personally, I think he should have swept the leg on a changeover somewhere back around 21-20, but props to the big man for sheer tenacity. My feet hurt just watching the highlights on ESPN.

Mr. Bulldawg said...

Isner is truly one Damn Good Dawg

VAdawg said...

Isner wore a dawgs shirt in his postgame interview. What a DGD.

Muckbeast said...

Way to go Isner.

Too bad he was way too drained for the next round :(.

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