The Longest Match gallery: We will never see its like again

Wimbledon
The Longest Match

The introduction of fifth-set tiebreakers at all four Grand Slams brings with it the end of an era, and just about guarantees that John Isner’s victory over Nicolas Mahut will remain the longest match in history.

The Longest Match
A plaque to commemorate the Longest Match between USA’s John Isner and France’s Nicolas Mahut which took place in the 2010 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, Wimbledon.

What started as a ding-dong match between a big server in Isner and a determined Mahut, would become an epic match for the ages despite the first four sets going by without anything remarkable happening before play was suspended due to bad light.

The Longest Match
John Isner (left) reacts as his match against Nicolas Mahut (right) is suspended for bad light by referee Soeren Friemel during day three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

Isner failed to convert four match points over the course of a full day of play that still failed to separate the two.

The Longest Match
Fans watch the match between France’s Nicolas Mahut and USA’s John Isner on Court 18 during Day Three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

By the end of the day a considerable crowd had gathered and chanted ‘we want more’ as play was suspended.

The Longest Match
USA’s John Isner in his match against France’s Nicolas Mahut on Court 18 during Day Three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

Isner clearly held an edge but just could not convert his dominance into the win, try as he might, although credit must go to Mahut for his dogged determination.

France’s Nicolas Mahut in action with USA’s John Isner during Day Three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

While the chair umpire and players had no choice in the matter, the linespeople and ball boys and girls at least got to rotate out during the course of the amazing fifth set.

The Longest Match
France’s Nicolas Mahut in action against USA’s John Isner during Day Three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

Neither man was able to find a break during their second day of action on court.

The Longest Match
USA’s John Isner in his match against France’s Nicolas Mahut on Court 18 during Day Three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

At 68-68 Mahut had a half chance after going up 0-30 on the Isner serve but the American powered out of trouble with his big serve.

France’s Nicolas Mahut against USA’S John Isner in their First round of the 2010 Tennis Wimbledon Championships.

For all its charm and headline-grabbing the match caused considerable scheduling headaches for organisers.

Fans applaud John Isner and Nicolas Mahut as they walk out for the 100th game of the fifth set during day three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

The crowd lapped it up though, swelling as the match went on and on.

Nicolas Mahut during his match against John Isner, at the same time as the scoreboard stopped working during day three of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, Wimbledon.

The scoreboard failed before either man’s serve faltered, with IBM programmers called in after the board reached what was thought to be a sensible limit.

The Longest Match
USA’s John Isner celebrates victory over France’s Nicolas Mahut in their record breaking match on Court 18 during Day Four of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships.

Isner collapsed after sealing the win, while Mahut was shattered.

John Isner
USA’s John Isner consoles France’s Nicolas Mahut (right) after their record breaking match on Court 18 during Day Four of the 2010 Wimbledon Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, Wimbledon.

Latest