John Isner carried on the outstanding weekend for Americans by winning the Miami Open title, beating Alexander Zverev 6-7 6-4 6-4 in the final. It is his first Masters 1000 title, having lost in the final three times previously. Isner has also secured a career high ranking of No. 9 with the win, beating his previous best of 10. It also means he is once again the No. 1 American, topping Sam Querrey.
As you’d expect, Isner’s success this fortnight has been heavily reliant on some outstanding serving. He hit 18 aces overall and won 82% of points on first serve in this match, not getting broken once. He did falter in the first set tiebreak though, dropping both points on serve when up 4-3, eventually gifting the first set with an errant backhand wide.
Zverev tightened things up on serve in the second set, dropping only two points on serve through his first four games. Unfortunately for him, he was broken at the first opportunity at 4-4 thanks to a huge Isner forehand winner. Isner served it out but Zvereb had the opportunity to break back immediately. He twice failed to convert break point, the second coming in a great point that was ended with an Isner passing shot following some excellent defence.
Zverev was once again under pressure on serve in the decider, saving break points at 1-1 and 2-2. The all decisive break though came again at 4-4. Down 15-40, the German hit a routine forehand into the net. Isner served it out to love for the biggest win of his career, capping off the tournament with another impressive win.
“To win like that in front of a crowd like that, with that atmosphere, you can’t replicate moments like that, it was absolutely amazing.” Isner said. “I never thought I would be in this moment considering how I was playing coming into this event.”