Isner upset by Opelka in 1st round at Aussie Open

Photo of Isner upset by Opelka in 1st round at Aussie Open

John Isner hit more aces than his opponent, 47-40. He delivered more total winners and finished with more overall points, too. What Isner failed to do for the first time in his career was beat an American foe at a Grand Slam tournament, and now the highest-ranked man from the U.S. is gone from the Australian Open.

Reilly Opelka, ranked just 97th, earned his first victory in a main-draw match at a major by edging Isner in four tiebreakers 7-6 (4), 7-6 (6), 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5).

Isner was seeded No. 9, was a semifinalist at Wimbledon last year and had been 9-0 in all-U.S. contests at the Slams.

If anyone is the 33-year-old's equal when it comes to big serving, though, it's Opelka, a 21-year-old based in Florida who at 6-foot-11 (2.11 meters) is an inch (3 centimeters) taller than Isner.

Isner went up a break in the fourth set and served to force a fifth while ahead 5-4. But he got broken there, missing one backhand followed by a trio of forehands. Opelka took the eventual - inevitable? - tiebreaker with the help with of three aces, including one at 227 kph (141 mph) to close out the match.

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