John Isner looks to reach a second successive ATP Newport final when he takes on Ryan Harrison in tonight's semi-finals.
Isner is looking to successfully defend a title for the first time in his career this week and he was very happy with his 6-4, 7-6(2) win over qualifier Izak Van Der Merwe in the quarters, a tricky opponent on grass.
“He mixed up the serve and volleys more than I anticipated. I thought he was going to do it every time, so that threw me off a little bit,” Isner said. “When good servers meet on a court like that, it’s not necessarily going to be so pretty. It was the sort of match I expected. I’m sure I could have played better, and more aggressive, but all in all I’m very happy with the result.”
Harrison had an easier time of it as he won through to his third semi-final of the season when Milos Raonic's conqueror Ben Becker retired trailing 6-4, 3-0 with a hamstring injury.
“It was unfortunate that he had to retire. You never want to have anything bad like that happen to another guy,” Harrison said. “I felt I was playing and serving well and was in a good position there. I hope he has a speedy recovery. (Looking ahead to the final) I know John really well. We've played Davis Cup together. I've watched him win some really big matches this year. I've been training with him a lot. He knows my game, and I know his game, so it's going to be a fun match tomorrow.”
Prediction: Isner in three.