After John Isner lost his second-round Wimbledon match to Thiemo de Bakker of the Netherlands 6-0, 6-3, 6-2 on Friday, the American quickly admitted one thing.
He never had a chance.
After playing a record-setting 11-hour, 5-minute first-round match that took three days and finished with a 70-68 fifth set against Nicolas Mahut, Isner said the second match was not much fun. "It was brutal," he said. "Things were looking pretty bleak right from the get-go. I wasn't going to quit. It wasn't like I was dying out there. I was just tired."
Isner said he had rubbed his toes raw on his size 15 feet. He also gave credit to a newfound love of drinking coconut water for his endurance. "It helps me rehydrate really well," he said. "Years past, I'd have issues with cramping. But ever since I've started drinking that the night before, I've nipped that problem in the bud."
Isner, not unexpectedly, pulled out of the doubles competition. His partner, Santa Monica's Sam Querrey, was fine with that. "I never expected him to play," Querrey said.
De Bakker had needed a 16-14 fifth set to win his first-round match. "But that's nothing any more," he joked.
He said he felt bad for Isner: "You know he's struggling. In the first set, he didn't try at all. In the second set, he was trying a little bit better, in the third also."
-- Diane Pucin