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  • 6/27/2010

Longest professional tennis match

longest tennis
Nobody said making Guinness World Records history was easy.

The 2010 Wimbledon Championships has seen John Isner (USA, below left) and Nicolas Mahut (France) labour across three gruelling days of tennis to smash a number of new Guinness World Records achievements en route to Isner’s 6-4, 3-6, 6-7, 7-6, 70-68 victory.

Never in the history of professional tennis have so many records been broken so epically.

It begins with the match itself, easily the Longest professional tennis match, at a time of 11 hours and 5 min. The previous record stood at 6 hours, 33 minutes in a 2004 French Open encounter between Arnaud Clement (France) and Fabrice Santoro (France). To put this in perspective, the 8-hour, 11-minute fifth set alone between Isner (below) and Mahut lasted longer in time than any other professional tennis match in history.

The men played for so long that it appeared they were on track for the Longest tennis marathon, set at 36 hours, 36 minutes, and 36 seconds and achieved by Jeroen Wagenaar (Netherlands) and Serge Fernando (Netherlands) at the Tennis Society 'T.C. de Kooistee' in Hellevoetsluis, Netherlands, on 12 September 2009.

In terms of professional tennis, though, nobody had ever seen a match like this and most likely never will again.

By default, the match also owns the record for Longest Grand Slam tennis match and of course Longest Wimbledon tennis match. All of the records set by the duo in their meeting have the distinction of holding records at the three different levels.

longest tennis

Naturally within such a match, other records will also tumble. Among these was the Most games played in a professional tennis match. The historic five-set duel saw 183 games played before Isner emerged with the win. This topped the previous record of 122 games in a 1973 Davis Cup doubles match.

En route to his triumph, Isner broke the record for Most aces served in a professional tennis match with 112. Incredibly, Mahut finished with 103 aces of his own, destroying the previous mark of 78 set by Ivo Karlovic (Croatia) in 2009, but still bested by Isner.

The magnificent match most obviously wouldn’t have reached its historic heights without the monster fifth set. It holds a record of its very own, as the Most games played in a professional tennis set with 138, as Isner emerged with the 70-68 result.

Truly a magnificent three days for fans of tennis, sport in general and world records.

After the match, Wimbledon officials justifiably honored both Isner and Mahut for their Herculean efforts in a match the likes we may never see again.

Surely no matter how the rest of the Wimbledon Championships unfold, the 2010 tournament will be remembered for the heroic world-record breaking display between John Isner and Nicolas Mahut, forever entwined.

Source: guinnessworldrecords.com

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