John Isner Claims Van Alen Cup
The Campbell's Hall of Fame Tennis Championships has wrapped for another year, with No. 1 seed John Isner claiming the Van Alen Cup. Isner defeated Olivier Rochus to become the first No. 1 seed to win the tournament since its first year in 1976. Click for photos.
In the singles match, 6'9 Isner overcame 5'6 Rochus in the match that was the greatest height differential ever in an ATP World Tour final. Isner fired 22 aces en route to his 6-3, 7-6(7) victory. He did not drop a set throughout the entire tournament. The tournament was a turn-around week for Isner, who had not won back to back matches since Miami in March.
"This year I haven't had great results," admitted Isner. "The last time I won back-to-back matches was Miami. So it's huge on any level, but especially on this level, to win five matches in a row. This game is all about confidence, so I'll definitely take this into my next event and events after that."
The win was Isner’s second career ATP World Tour victory. His decision to compete in Newport was a last-minute one, but he certainly made the most of the week.
Isner took a late wild card into Newport, forcing him to miss his brother, Nathan’s wedding in Virginia on Saturday. "I told myself that I was going to take the wild card here and the only way I was going to miss the wedding was if I got to the semi-finals," he said. "But it definitely turned out to be a great decision and I owe a huge thanks to Mark Stenning for the wild card. It’s the perfect start to the summer and I really feel like my best surface is the hard courts in the U.S. so I’m going to have a lot of confidence from this."
With the win, Isner became the third American in a row to win the ATP World Tour’s first summer stop in the United States – which kicked off on Fourth of July.
On the opposite side of the net, Rochus was competing in his second consecutive Newport final – where he was also a semi-finalist in 2009.
“I had a very good tournament,” said Rochus. “My level was very good all week. He was better than me today. A bigger serve. I’m proud of [myself], again to be in the final here two times in a row. It’s fantastic. I think today he didn’t get the final very easy. He had to fight to the last point.”
In claiming the Van Alen Cup, Isner also earned 250 ATP World Tour points and $76,500. His South African Airways ATP World Tour rankings jumped from world No. 46 to No. 36.