Kevin Anderson reaches first Wimbledon final with record-breaking John Isner win

John Isner celebrates his quarter-final win at Wimbledon

John Isner of the USA leaves the court after being defeated by Kevin Anderson of South Africa in the men's semifinal match at Wimbledon on Friday.

Only the U.S. Open has a tiebreaker fifth-set format.

For much of the afternoon on the All England Lawn Tennis Club's centre court - which eventually stretched to an incredible six hours and 35 minutes - proceedings went according to the script.

"I don't really know what to say right now", said Anderson. "I really hope we can look at this, because at the end you don't feel great", said Anderson who has been on court for over 21 hours at these championships.

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.

While the match was tense, it was far from compelling, with both power players simply blasting serves past one another and trading service in the final set. Not only is he advancing to the first Grand Slam semifinal of his career at Wimbledon, he and his wife, Highland Park native Madison McKinley, are expecting their first baby girl. They combined for 102 aces: 53 by Isner, 49 by Anderson.

Anderson moves on to play Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal in the men's 2018 Wimbledon final.

That point ended up actually setting up the winning break for Anderson.

The world was a demonstrably different place when Kevin Anderson and John Isner first took the court Friday for what would become a marathon Wimbledon semifinal.

When Isner finally slapped a tired forehand wide at 7.46pm local time, there were no wild roars, no fist pumping and no raised arms in celebration from Anderson.

Although the game was dominated by big serving, there were some awesome highlights, including a key moment deep in the fifth set.

Kevin Anderson edged a tight opening set 7-6 (6) against American John Isner. Rather than giving up the point and settling for 15-15, Anderson scrambled to his feet, picking up his racket with his left hand and sending back a forehand return.

After Anderson dropped the second set on a tiebreak despite making only one unforced error, a see-saw third set full of momentum changes followed, with both men creating chances, but unable to take them. He lost the first two sets, and when Federer forced a match point up 5-4 in the third, the outlook seemed bleak. "I don't know", Isner said. "My left heel is killing me and I have an bad blister on my right foot".

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