Isner Battles Past Countryman Harrison In Madrid
American to meet 2017 semi-finalist Cuevas
Isner, at a career-high No. 9 ATP Ranking, hit 22 aces in the one-hour, 31-minute encounter en route to victory. Isner improves to 7-3 in his FedEx ATP Head2Head series with Harrison, levelling their 2018 series at 1-1 after Harrison’s success in Acapulco three months ago.
In a match which featured no break points, Isner was given a tough test by Harrison as he secured his 10th victory in Madrid. The 33-year-old dominated the opening-set decider, firing his 11th ace of the match to clinch a one-set advantage. The second tie-break proved far more competitive, with both men failing to convert set points before Isner unleashed a powerful forehand into the corner to move into the next round.
Isner will next face Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas. The 2017 semi-finalist (l. to Thiem) took just short of two hours to overcome Spain’s Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-1, 6-7(2), 6-2. Cuevas hit 15 aces throughout the second-round clash and dropped just nine points on serve to book a third-round meeting with World No. 9 Isner.
John Isner has now won 10 matches at the Mutua Madrid Open (10-6). The American most notably reached the quarter-finals on his last appearance in the Spanish capital, defeating Adrian Mannarino, Thomaz Bellucci and Nick Kyrgios before falling to Tomas Berdych in a final-set tie-break.