Isner Sets Sights On Nitto ATP Finals Bid
American now heads home for imminent birth of first child
John Isner says that qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals this year is now a big goal for him following his quarter-final exit from the US Open. The American is currently in ninth position in the ATP Race To London for the eight-player season finale at The O2 in London from 11-18 November.
“That's still a big goal of mine,” said Isner, following his four-set loss to 2009 champion Juan Martin del Potro on Tuesday. “Trying to get into the Top 8 is definitely going to be the goal going forward.
“When you get to a stage at a tournament like this, you're playing for so much points-wise, so it would have been nice to have won that match. It would have given me a nice boost, but it just wasn't to be. Fortunately, I lost someone who is ahead in the Race, so I've just got to try to sneak in there.”
First of all, Isner will return home to support his wife, Madison, who is due to give birth to their first child, a girl, in the next couple of weeks.
"This is going to be life-changing for myself and Maddie and something that we're very excited about,” he admitted. “I'm sure I'm going to learn as I go. I'm going to screw up a lot of things at first, and Maddie will probably get mad at me. It's definitely some of the most important days of my life are coming up.”
“It's a great honour,” said Isner. “I'm very glad they presented me with that. It's a huge honour. I'm very appreciative of that. I didn't expect it.
“This sport is tough, so it's so easy to get very frustrated out there on the court when things aren't going your way. It's a one-on-one sport. You're on an island out there, a lot of people watching you. I guess to keep your cool and be a good sport is very important. It's what the young kids look up to. So for them to give me that award, I'm very appreciative of that.”
Isner is now 30-16 on the season, which includes two ATP World Tour titles – his first Masters 1000 at the Miami Open presented by Itaú (d. del Potro) in March and his fifth BB&T Atlanta Open trophy (d. Harrison) in July. The 33-year-old also advanced to his first Grand Slam championship semi-final at Wimbledon (l. to Anderson).