P. MATHIEU/J. Isner 6‑7, 6‑4, 6‑4, 3‑6, 18‑16





Q.  Another marathon.  Get in the fifth and seemed like you just couldn’t do enough to break him?

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah, that’s what it is.


Q.  Just talk about going through the fifth, what you’re thinking, how the body is feeling, what you’re trying to do.

JOHN ISNER:  I felt fine.  I just ‑‑ I didn’t play the right way.


Q.  You had opportunities to change it a little bit.  You changed it up some?  Or just nothing was working?  He was too consistent from the back and returning okay at times?

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah, I just ‑‑ he was the better player the whole day.

My inability to change what I was doing cost me the match, but he was better.


Q.  Can you just elaborate on that?  What did you do that you needed to change?

JOHN ISNER:  I just gotta play a little better, but I didn’t do it.


Q.  Strategically, what were you not doing that you needed to do?

JOHN ISNER:  To go for my shots more.


Q.  You had a long match at Wimbledon with Mahut.  This time you were starting from behind.  Did that have a different feel for you?

JOHN ISNER:  No.  I don’t think so.  I served well.  Just didn’t do anything else that well.

He deserved to win.


Q.  You were a real hero in Monte‑Carlo.  Perhaps it’s tennis lows or what?  You know, there you beat the French, and you’re a great player on clay.

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah, I played pretty well there.  I’m not anywhere near that level right now, so that’s disappointing.


Q.  How much did that Wimbledon match come into your mind?  Did you think about that at all today?

JOHN ISNER:  No, I didn’t think about that.


Q.  Is this disappointing because of the kind of match it was, the length of it, et cetera, to lose?  Or is part of your disappointment, which is clear, that you feel this is a match you should be winning against that guy in the second round at a Grand Slam?

JOHN ISNER:  No, I mean, it’s more disappointing on how I lost it.  Just not, I don’t know, for whatever, six hours, really not doing what I should be doing.

I don’t know.  I just couldn’t free myself up the whole match, so I just ‑‑ he’s a good player, and he was better than me today.  He deserved to win.


Q.  Part of you not being able to do what you wanted to do because you didn’t have a great feel for the ball and you didn’t trust if you were going to try to rip a shot that it would go in?

JOHN ISNER:  I never felt comfortable.  It’s been like that since I’ve been in Europe, really.  Bit of a, I don’t know, slump, I guess you could say.  It just wasn’t ‑‑ yeah, I don’t know what it was.  I just didn’t play the right way.


Q.  Is it kind of a mystery to you why you felt that way since you’ve come over to Europe, or can you put your finger on something?

JOHN ISNER:  It’s just ‑‑ I don’t know.  I’ve just been getting too frustrated in general, you know.  You come over here and you want to do well, and you don’t do that well so you have long days.

I just let it, this whole trip, get to me.  It’s the absolute wrong thing to do.  It’s very bad on my part.  Just wasn’t ‑‑ I don’t know.  I just wasn’t ‑‑ I never felt like I was in a good rhythm at any point.  I guess I have been over here for four weeks.


Q.  Even after you win the fourth set, you don’t go into the fifth with any type of optimism at all?

JOHN ISNER:  No, I did.  I did.  But it just ‑‑ nothing.  It just didn’t go my way.

I felt confident, especially with the way I was serving, but I just didn’t do anything else the right way, and he did.  You know, I thought he played fairly well.


Q.  So you’re saying you weren’t tired, though.  It looked like towards the latter half of the fifth, and this is understandable, there were balls that normally you could get to that you pretty much just said, I’m not gonna run for that ball?

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah, I guess I was a little bit more tired in the fifth than the first or second set, but ‑‑ well, I felt all right.  I mean, yeah, down a little bit, that’s to be expected.  It’s just the whole, my game part of it wasn’t there.


Q.  Any part of you that thought, I just have to hang on here?  Maybe I’m better off if this goes to tomorrow and gets dark?

JOHN ISNER:  No, I didn’t even ‑‑ I wasn’t thinking like that at all.  I don’t know ‑‑ no, that thought didn’t cross my mind.  It stinks that I lost, but sleeping on a match like this isn’t much fun.

Unfortunately, I lost.


Q.  You get down three match points, play some huge points, sometimes when you escape the executioner, it gives you a second life, you feel like, okay, I’m going to be here.  Did you feel like after that you might pull it out?

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah.  I mean, I escaped a lot today.  It could have been worse.

But I just ‑‑ you know, I just didn’t get it done.  I felt like I got caught in patterns that weren’t ideal for me.  I was hitting every return to his backhand and he was stepping up and running me around.  I’m not gonna win point when I’m running side to side.


Q.  So you needed to be more aggressive overall?



Q.  Returns, everything?

JOHN ISNER:  100%.  Everything.


Q.  Were you lacking confidence on your own backhand during the match?

JOHN ISNER:  Yes, I guess you could say I didn’t have that much confidence out there at all, to be honest.  Going for my shots ‑‑ I mean, I wasn’t going for my shots at certain points in the match, and that comes from a little bit of a lack of confidence.


Q.  What do you do to mentally turn this around, moving ahead to the grass?  You’re just going to go home, decompress, talk to Craig, and what?

JOHN ISNER:  Yeah, I’m going to go home.  I don’t even want to think about tennis right now.