It is only the second round of Wimbledon, yet already there are headlines being made. Steve Darcis scored perhaps the upset of the tournament by defeating Rafael Nadal, and now along with American John Isner, has to pull out of Wimbledon as a result.
Steve Darcis was not supposed to even last this long, a match against Rafael Nadal should have spelled early doom for his title hopes. However after scoring the upset of his life, Darcis had to feel like he had a major career opportunity ahead of him, however he suffered an injury to his left shoulder.
Darcis went into Wimbledon ranked 135 in the world, and figured to see his name surge higher if he would have been able to continue his run. The Belgian looked fantastic in defeating Rafael Nadal and snapping the French Open Champions 22 match winning streak.
Based on his own words after accomplishing the signature feat of his career in the opening round, withdrawing has to be tough on him. The 29 year old said that “I need to keep my focus. It would be a shame to beat Nadal, then stop there” after finishing his victory.
On his Twitter page, Darcis let his feelings on the withdrawal show, tweeting “Had to withdraw after a win like this!? The most difficult thing I’ve ever had to do!!!”
He would have faced Poland’s Lukasz Kubot in the second round.
Along with Steve Darcis, American John Isner has also had to pull out of the tournament due to injury. Unlike Darcis, Isner’s injury occurred during his second round match.
Facing off against Adrian Mannarino, he won his first service of the match to take a 1-0 lead in the first set. He then went up 15-0 on the next game before calling for a medical timeout. Officials wrapped his knee and he attempted to continue playing.
Visibly struggling to run down balls, he dropped the second game of the first set to tie the match at 1-1. After attempting just one serve in his second service, he decided that he would not be able to continue.
Pulling out of Wimbledon had to be as hard on John Isner as it was on Steve Darcis. Isner was poised to advance to the third round of the tournament for the first time in his career.
Isner already has one record at Wimbledon however, he played the longest match in tennis history three years ago at the event. His match against Nicholas Mahut took a score of 70-68 to determine a winner in the final set, lasting an unbelievable 11 hours over a three day period.
Disappointment is certainly the predominate emotion both John Isner and Steve Darcis are feeling after having to pull out of Wimbledon due to injury. However both men probably made the right decision, and would not have withdrawn had there been any chance their injury would allow them to continue. After scoring wins in the first round, especially Darcis upset over Nadal, both men can at least carry some momentum with them into whatever tournament they enter next.
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Senior Sports Editor
The Guardian Express