Roger Federer’s excruciating loss to Novak Djokovic in the 2019 Wimbledon final wowed many fans and players alike for the quality of tennis on offer and American John Isner is one of those to take a bagful of inspiration from it.
Isner, who is the top seed at the Atlanta Open after winning another title at the Newport Open last week, has been fascinated by Federer’s showing in that remarkable final. Speaking to AJC news, Isner, who is himself 34, said that for a 37-year-old to play that brilliantly was very motivating.
“The fact he’s playing so well, at this age, is truly incredible. The fact that he’s moving so well, and everything, I think, for me, seeing that, it helps me out.”
Isner had made a return to competitive at Wimbledon after suffering a foot fracture at the Miami Masters earlier this year. He fell in the second round in five sets to Mikhail Kukushkin before going on to win the title at the Hall of Fame Open to send a warning to his competitors in the lead-up to the final Grand Slam of the year, the US Open.
The American was a quarter-finalist at the US Open last year – his best result at Flushing Meadows – having also made it to the semi-finals at Wimbledon in 2018. All of this underlined the fact his own peak performances have come at a later stage in Isner’s career too, and with Federer playing the way he has at 37, the American will hope he can continue to keep pushing on.