Recognize these names, Frederico Gil, Marco Chiudinelli, Benjamin Mitchell? What about these players, Gilles Simon, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic?
These are just a few players John Isner has successfully defeated this 2012 season. The 6'9, 245lb pound Goliath has show that David's odds or not looking to great this year. WIth a record of 17-6, and four of those coming off of clay. Johns victory over Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and going five sets with Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros last year, one has to think that John is the leading Dark Horse going into the French open.
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Kyle, you are dead on with this. No one is going to want to see Isner in their section of the draw, no one. That includes Fed, Rafa, Nole and the rest. He is so confident and in control at the moment and on clay. I know that he grew up in North Carolina (right?) and they have a lot of Har-Tru there (the simulated clay). Is this why he is so good on clay?
Well, lets not get too ahead of ourselves. Doing well for a two match stretch is one thing, but potentially having to play multiple 5 set matches at the French is entirely a different thing. And many times Isner just looks ragged after a 5 setter at the U.S. Open, and especially during the second week. I think he has to gain tons more endurance and recovery ability before he would be a threat there.
what do you guys think? If John Isner isn't the leading Dark Horse, then who is?
Thanks for the response.
Well, he certainly womped on Djoko at BNP Paribas. I saw it live! He's definitely pulling the trigger on the forehand more often and his slice backhand has gotten better than at the L.A. Open two years ago when I saw him. Mac says that he IS the dark horse that none of the Top 4 wants to play. I agree.
Ok, ok. But how will he be in the second week of the one major that seems to wear everyone out but the top 4? Does he have the endurance? That seems to be the over arching problem he has had for years. Has his physicallity improved enough to battle it out on the clay? Especially once he starts playing clay courters non-stop?
Well, that is the question. But maybe he's getting seasoned and these are his good years. We'll see.
Alright,my Big Issy wagon is getting bigger!!!
Heh, he looks like a good samaritan kid that lives down my block. lol
Interesting stat, Isner has 2 wins on clay against top 10 players this year. In 596 career wins on tour Roddick never beat a top 10 player on clay, amazing.
Really, that's pretty rough. At least, Sampras got somewhere at the French. Semis in 1996.