Originally written on Tennis Panorama  |  Last updated 11/16/14

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 19: John Isner of the United States of America plays a forehand in his first round match against Andreas Seppi of Italy during day two of the 2010 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 19, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Mark Dadswell/Getty Images)

Triad native John Isner, winner of the inaugural Winston-Salem Open, and Andy Roddick, a former world No. 1 player, have signed to compete in the second Winston-Salem Open at Wake Forest University.  The tournament will be held August 18-25, 2012, at the Wake Forest Tennis Complex adjacent to BB&T Field.

 

Tickets to the Winston-Salem Open go on sale to the public May 15 and will be available online at www.winstonsalemopen.com, by calling (336) 758-6409 or in person at the Wake Forest ticket office located at Bridger Field House at BB&T Field.  Ticket prices and additional information related to purchasing tickets to the Winston-Salem Open will be available within coming weeks.

 

“We are extremely pleased that John and Andy have decided to come back to Winston-Salem this year.  Both of them loved competing in the Winston-Salem Open last year and expressed a desire to return at the conclusion of the tournament,” Winston-Salem Open director Bill Oakes said. “We believe our field of players will be very strong this year because many of them will want playing time on a surface like ours between competing on Wimbledon’s grass courts at the Olympics and the U.S. Open, which has a surface like ours.”

 

A graduate of Greensboro Page High School and four-time All American at the University of Georgia, Isner recently defeated Roger Federer in the U.S. Davis Cup Team’s 5-0 first round and also defeated world No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the BNP Paribas Open last month.

 

Isner defeated the sixth-ranked Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to put the Americans ahead an insurmountable 3-1 at the Monte Carlo Country Club in Roquebrune Cap Martin, France this past weekend.  His ascension up the ATP rankings to the world No. 10 was something that began building during his play during the second half of 2011, including Isner’s win at the Winston-Salem Open. After reaching his career-high of No. 10 in the world last month, Isner is currently the No. 2 ranked American player behind Mardy Fish, although he could soon pass him as he is just 15 rankings points behind.

 

Isner, who turns 27 this month, is well known in tennis circles as the only player in the top 150 to attend college for four years, for being the second tallest player on tour (6’9”) and for his fast rise on the ATP ranking.  He has one of the hardest serves among current pros and holds the record for the longest match ever played in tennis history. Isner’s heroic battle at Wimbledon in 2010 against Frenchman Nicolas Mahut lasted for 11 hours and 5 minutes, ending with Isner’s 70-68 victory in the fifth set.

 

Roddick, 29, recently stunned Roger Federer in the third round of the Sony Ericsson Open.  Prior to that, he had last beaten Federer in Miami in 2008.  Roddick’s coveted stay at No. 1 in the ATP rankings lasted from March of 2003 through December of 2003.  He has won 30 career ATP World Tour singles titles, including the 2003 US Open title. He also has 20 runner-up finishes in his career, including four Grand Slams. Three times he has been the runner-up at Wimbledon – 2004, 2005 and 2009. All three times he lost in the finals to Roger Federer; Federer’s 5-7, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5), 3-6, 16-14 victory in 2009 was perhaps Roddick’s most-heartbreaking defeat.

 

Roddick has a 33-12 record in Davis Cup singles, including a perfect 5-0 record in Davis Cup matches in Winston-Salem.  He also played in the Flow Motors Invitational before turning professional.

 

In his debut as the U.S.’s No. 1 player in 2001, at age 19, he won two singles rubbers as the U.S. beat India in a World Group Qualifier at Joel Coliseum. In 2007, he won his opening match to pave the way for the U.S.’s much-hyped quarterfinal victory against Spain, which propelled the U.S. on to the Davis Cup championship. Then in 2008, he tacked on two more singles wins in a quarterfinal victory against France.

The Winston-Salem Open, an ATP World Tour 250 event with a total purse of $625,000, will take place from August 18-25, 2012, with qualifying set for August 18. The tournament will be the final men’s event of the Emirates Airline US Open Series.  For more information on the 2012 Winston-Salem Open, please go to www.winstonsalemopen.com.

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