Retiring the Ace: John Isner’s 17th US Open concludes a glorious career

John Isner announced he will be hanging up his boots after the 2023 US Open. The lanky American will be making his 17th successive appearance at the US Open, a feat representative of his consistency despite his towering frame.

The 6’10” phenom forced his way into the top 20 for ten successive years but has slid down the rankings in recent years. As he bids farewell to a remarkable career marked by 16 ATP titles and a career-high 8 ranking.

John Isner
Photo by Icon sport

In addition, there are numerous impressive achievements, including being the oldest first-time ATP Masters 1000 singles champion at 32 years old. Moreover, he has been the year-end No. 1 American eight times.

His retirement announcement after the US Open marks the end of a remarkable journey, leaving behind a legacy as one of the greatest servers in tennis history. Isner will surely be looking to add to his record of 14,411 career aces and improve on his quarter-final finishes in 2011 and 2018.

The remarkable career of John Isner

Throughout his illustrious career, Isner has achieved a multitude of accolades, including 16 ATP Tour titles, 3 Challenger Tour titles a career-high World No. 8 ranking, and a record number of career aces, establishing himself as a significant figure in the realm of professional tennis.

Isner admitted that leaving this all behind was a difficult decision but one that he had to take. Reflecting on his career, the 38-year-old admitted he did not imagine these achievements when he left his collegiate career for a professional one.

“There comes a time in every athlete’s career that they have to decide to hang it up. For me, that time is now,” Isner posted on Instagram. “I didn’t come [to] this decision lightly, but I feel it is the right way to go. When I left the University of Georgia in 2007, there was no way I could have imagined playing 17 years on the ATP Tour.

“Of course, there are countless matches I wish I could have back, but I am proud of what I was able to accomplish. The journey was nothing short of incredible,” Isner shared on his Instagram.

John Isner
Photo by Icon sport

Isner’s impact on the tour

As Isner steps away from professional tennis, the awe-inspiring magnitude of this accomplishment evokes profound respect, reinforcing his indelible mark on American tennis and the global sports arena.

Cultivating a powerful serve, Isner has left a lasting legacy that continues to inspire future generations. His impact extends beyond his personal achievements, having contributed greatly to the growth of tennis in the United States, inspiring younger generations of players.

As the year-end No. 1 American eight times, the impact on the domestic scene cannot be underestimated. Furthermore, victories over tennis greats such as Djokovic, Nadal, Federer, Murray, and Wawrinka have enhanced the profile of American tennis.

Moreover, alongside Nicolas Mahut, he was the reason for the tie-breaker rule change in the world of tennis. His Wimbledon 2010  epic duel with Mahut lasted an unprecedented 11 hours over three days. This match holds the record for the longest professional tennis match in history.

Lastly, the semi-final match at Wimbledon in 2018 demonstrated Isner’s fortitude as he battled Kevin Anderson in a marathon that lasted over six hours.

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