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Anderson, Isner in second-longest Wimbledon singles match

Anderson, Isner in second-longest Wimbledon singles match

Kevin Anderson called for changes to the way grand slam matches are decided after revealing his sympathy for John Isner at the end of their six-and-a-half-hour Wimbledon marathon.

Anderson had already battled through another epic five-setter, defeating Roger Federer in the a quarter-final that ended 13-11 in the fifth set.

Tennis fans on social media cried that they were left bored stiff by a Wimbledon semi-final that lasted six hours and 36 minutes.

"I hope this is a bit of sign for Grand Slams to change this format", Anderson said.

The other was the longest match in the history of the sport, a 6-4, 3-6, 6-7, 7-6, 70-68 victory over Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon in 2010 that lasted 11 hours, 5 minutes over three days.

Isner appeared to be struggling at times from 12-all to 18-all, but he held firm on his serve as Anderson, playing his second-consecutive five-set match, found a second (or third or fourth) wind.

Novak Djokovic was leading Rafael Nadal 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (9) in a compelling showdown filled with entertaining points that was suspended as soon as the third set concluded at just past 11 p.m., the curfew at the All England Club.

Isner has been playing the tennis of his life this year, claiming a first Masters title and now on the threshold of a first Slam final, and he edgedMilos Raonic, whose body looked to be letting him down once more in a career ravaged with injury.

Isner also broke the record for most aces at Wimbledon, hitting 214 at the tournament and 53 on Friday.

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Anderson, who was runner-up to Nadal in last year's US Open final, becomes the first South African man to reach the Wimbledon decider since Brian Norton in 1921.

At one point in the fifth set, a spectator shouted, "Come on, guys!"

Anderson would create that turning moment when he resorted to using his non-dominant hand to win a point after tumbling to the grass.

Of course, there was another player on the other side of the net - for whom Anderson's triumph was a tragedy: Isner.

The only break point in set number two came in game nine when John saved it to keep his serve intact for another set, and this time he was the better player in the tie break, racing into a 5-0 lead and closing it 7-5 to level the overall score at 1-1 after two hours of play.

The match was ironically labelled "pointless" by viewers who complained Anderson would be left tired for Sunday's final.

Updates with Anderson victory in first semifinal. I really feel for him.

Isner did, however, break the record of the most serves at a tournament - beating Goran Ivanisevic's 213 on his way to the Wimbledon back in 2001. "I don't know", Isner said.