Reported by The Los Angeles Times
Highest-ranked American, who was seeded 11th at the tournament, falls to Colombian Alejandro Falla in five sets. Jamie Hampton of the U.S., ranked No. 100, defeats 27th-seeded Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia, 6-4, 7-6 (1), in women’s draw.
WIMBLEDON, England — Marathon man John Isner faded at the finish of another five-set match Monday at Wimbledon.
The highest-ranked American failed to convert a match point in the fourth set and lost in the first round to Alejandro Falla of Colombia, 6-4, 6-7 (7), 3-6, 7-6 (7), 7-5.
Isner, seeded 11th, is best known for winning the longest match in tennis history two years ago in the first round at Wimbledon, when he beat Nicolas Mahut, 70-68, in the fifth set. Isner also went five sets in the second round at the French Open last month, losing, 18-16, to Paul-Henri Mathieu. He has been eliminated in five sets in each of the last three Grand Slam events.
Since climbing to a career-best No. 9 in the rankings in mid-April, Isner is 3-5.
“I’m just really down on myself right now,” he said. “I’m trying not to feel the outside pressure. There are some good things expected of me, and I’m glad I’m in that position, but I’m just not performing right now. It’s just ugly right now.”
The 6-foot-9 Isner hit 31 aces and said he has been pleased with his serve, but not the rest of his game.
“Sometimes, and lately it has been happening quite a lot, I get out there in the match and I’m just so clouded,” he said. “I just can’t seem to figure things out. I’m my own worst enemy out there. It’s all mental for me, and it’s pretty poor on my part.”
Isner held a match point with Falla serving at 6-7 in the fourth set. The Colombian was on the ropes again serving at 5-5 in the final set when he faced three break points, but Isner failed to convert them, then lost serve in the final game.
American men were 3-3 on the first day of the tournament. Ryan Harrison won and will face top-ranked Novak Djokovic, the defending champion. Michael Russell and Ryan Sweeting also advanced, and James Blake and Donald Young lost.
The highest-seeded men — Djokovic, third-seeded Roger Federer, sixth-seeded Tomas Berdych and eighth-seeded Janko Tipsarevic — won in straight sets.
American Jamie Hampton pulled off the biggest upset among the women. Hampton, who had never played on grass courts until last week, defeated 27th-seeded Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia, 6-4, 7-6 (1).
“I’m kind of liking it right now,” a laughing Hampton said about playing on grass.
Hampton, ranked No. 100, first practiced on grass when she got to London ahead of Wimbledon. She wasn’t sure whether she’d be able to enter the Grand Slam tournament after she quit during her opening match at the French Open last month because of two herniated disks.
“In the back of my mind I’m sure I was worried about whether my back was going to hold up or not,” Hampton said after the match. “It’s a little stiff, but it’s all right. It sounds worse than it is.”
The top women’s players — top-seeded Maria Sharapova, third-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska, fifth-seeded Samantha Stosur and eighth-seeded Angelique Kerber — advanced in straight sets.
Including Venus Williams’ first-round loss, U.S. women were 2-3. Sloane Stephens also won; Melanie Oudin and Vania King were eliminated.