Isner motors past Mahut
John Isner avoided a repeat of his famous marathon match with Nicolas Mahut as he won in two sets at Rhode Island.
Last Updated: 12/07/12 9:36am
Top seed John Isner avoided a repeat of his famous marathon match with Nicolas Mahut as he dispatched the Frenchman 6-2 7-6 (7/2) in the second round of the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships in Rhode Island.
Isner and Mahut played out a match which lasted over 11 hours at Wimbledon in 2010, but this one, at just 78 minutes, was nearly 10 hours shorter as the American booked a quarter-final with South Africa's Izak van der Merwe.
The pair struggle to avoid each other in grasscourt competitions. They have now played each other four times, including a rematch at Wimbledon last year which Isner won in straight sets, all of which have been on grass.
Mahut's only victory over the American came at Queen's in 2008.
"Next year's Wimbledon, we'll probably see each other," Isner, who would have played Mahut at SW19 again this year had he not lost his first-round match to Alejandro Falla, told the ATP's official website.
"From the moment I warmed up today, I knew I was going to play better. I just felt more comfortable."
Van der Merwe beat another American, wildcard Jack Sock, 6-4 6-4.
Second seed Kei Nishikori also advanced, but he had to come from a set down to beat Belgium's Olivier Rochus.
Nishikori of Japan won 6-7 (6/8) 6-4 6-2 and will next face Rajeev Ram, a 7-6 (8/6) 6-3 winner over Michael Russell.
Former world number one Lleyton Hewitt beat Tim Smyczek 6-4 2-6 and Dudi Sela saw off Sam Querrey 5-7 7-6 (8/6) 6-2.