Sixth-seeded Lleyton Hewitt turned around the match against defending champion John Isner, seed number two, and advanced into the final of Hall of Fame Championship in Newport. The players met in the final last year when the US player won in straight sets to claim his second consecutive Newport trophy.
The players failed to hold in the opening two games of the rain-delayed clash – both of the semifinal matches were played on Sunday –, yet their serving improved as the opening set progressed. The former no. 1 Australian was serving to stay in the set at 6-5, yet the tie-break would not happen as Isner broke for the second time to go one nil up. Hewitt regrouped for the set two which went according to his plans – he got in possession of a double break cushion by 5-2 before serving the set out with a hold to love. He went 5-2 up in the final set as well, yet the home crowd favorite postponed the celebration by pegging one break back. Isner made it 5-4 after rescuing three match points on his serve, but he could not prevent the Australian converting the fourth one next. End score: 5-7, 6-2, 6-4.
Unseeded Frenchman Nicolas Mahut – who is known for losing to Isner in the longest match in professional tennis in first round of Wimbledon 2010 – raced to a smooth triumph against American veteran Michael Russell, ranked 95th. Both of the sets followed exactly the same pattern with the 31-year Frenchman escaping to 4-0 and holding on to a double break advantage – it was all over in one hour and six minutes of play. World no. 127 Mahut progressed with 6-2, 6-2 and will try to improve his 0-2 head-to-head record against his final opponent.
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