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Current world No. 9 and No. 1 American John Isner has committed to return to the Dell Technologies Hall of Fame Open as defending champion at this summer’s event. Isner is a 3-time champion in Newport, having won titles in 2011, 2012, and 2017. Fellow American Steve Johnson will also return to Newport, and a wild card has been awarded to Thanasi Kokkinakis- a rising star from Australia. All three players have had some huge wins this season, with Isner winning the biggest title of his career at the Miami Open, Johnson repeating as champion in Houston, and Kokkinakis (then world No. 175) knocking out world No. 1 Roger Federer in Miami.
“I always enjoy being in Newport in July,” commented Isner. “The Hall of Fame is a really special place to compete and the fans are always terrific. This has been an exciting season for me and I look forward to having Newport be part of it.”
Earlier this season, Isner won his first ever ATP Masters 1000 singles title at the Miami Open. Isner entered the tournament ranked world No. 17 and defeated three top-10 players en route to the trophy- Marin Cilic, Juan Martin del Potro, and Alexander Zverev. The victory propelled Isner back into the world top-10 for the first time since May 2014. His win in Miami was preceded by another huge hard court victory when he won the doubles title at Indian Wells, partnered with fellow American Jack Sock.
Topping off hist recent victories, Isner hit a major career milestone in April in Houston when he served his 10,000th career ace. The record puts him in the company of just three others who have ever done so- Ivo Karlovic, Roger Federer, and Goran Ivanisevic. The ball that Isner served his 10,000th ace with was carefully set aside by the staff at the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship in Houston and then sent to the International Tennis Hall of Fame, where it is now displayed as a part of tennis history.
“We’re looking forward to a great week of tennis in Newport, and John Isner, Steve Johnson, and Thanasi Kokkinakis will each bring a lot of energy and action to the competition. They have all seen some huge successes this year, and we’re thrilled to have them add Newport to their calendars,” stated International Tennis Hall of Fame CEO Todd Martin.
Houston Champ Steve Johnson Making a Return to Newport
Johnson returns to Newport for his fifth appearance, having twice been a quarterfinalist at the grass court event. Johnson is currently ranked world No. 55. Last month in Houston, Johnson won his third career title and second in Houston at the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship. Both Johnson and Isner have also been part of this season’s successful US Davis Cup team, which is now heading to the Davis Cup semifinals in September.
A Wild Card for Kokkinakis
Kokkinakis will be making his first appearance in Newport, having been granted a wild card into the event. The 22-year-old from Australia is currently ranked world No. 152 and he has notched some big wins early in his career. In Miami in March, Kokkinakis came through qualifying, won his first round and then faced Roger Federer in the second round. He dropped the first set and then came back to take out the world No. 1 in three sets. Last season, Kokkinakis had a win over then world No. 6 Milos Raonic on the grass courts at Queen’s Club. In Los Cabos, he took out world No. 14 Tomas Berdych en route to his first final, where he fell to Sam Querrey.
Tickets On Sale Now
Tickets for the Dell Technologies Hall of Fame Open are on sale now on www.HallofFameOpen.com. In addition to seven days of exciting pro tennis, the tournament features kids tennis clinics, a fashion show, and other great special events. Highlights for this summer include an exhibition match featuring reigning US Open Champion & Finalist Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys on Friday, July 20; the International Tennis Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony for Michael Stich and Helena Sukova on Saturday, July 21; and Invesco Legends Newport featuring Jim Courier, Tommy Haas, Lleyton Hewitt, and James Blake on Sunday, July 22. Tickets for all special events include access to that day’s tournament matches.