Big-serving American John Isner was impressed with the serving performance his fellow compatriot Reilly Opelka delivered during their Dallas semifinal clash. Opelka, 24, edged out Isner in two tight sets 7-6 (7) 7-6 (22) to reach the Dallas final.
It was the fifth meeting between the two and Opelka's fourth consecutive win over Isner. "The crowd was definitely behind me. It’s kind of extra disappointing to not be able to get over the line in my backyard.
That match was two guys serving big. [Opelka] is serving just massive. I don’t think anyone can break him out there," Isner said, as quoted on Tennis Up To Date.
Isner had his chances
As not a single break point was seen in the first set -- the set went into a tie-break -- in which Isner led 7-6 before Opelka won three points in a row to win the tight opener.
Isner then missed out on 10 set points in the second set tie-break as Opelka escaped with a straight-set win. A day later, Opelka beat Jenson Brooksby 7-6 (5) 7-6 (3) to win Dallas. “I thought I played very well under pressure, especially against a great player like Jenson.
He makes you very uncomfortable and he took me out of my comfort zone a lot of the match today," Opelka said during the trophy ceremony. "I really had to play my best tennis to get by and I barely did”. Opelka believes Brooksby is a great talent and that he will do big things in the game.
“I’m a big fan of his game, a big believer in him. He’s super young and he’s got a lot of tennis ahead of him still," Opelka said. "The scary thing is he has a lot to even improve on and I think that’s why he’s a future Top 10 player and he’s going to be winning many titles for many years to come”.