John Isner finished off the Miami Open in a quick way Sunday.
The 2012 Olympian defeated Germany’s Alexander Zverev in the men’s singles final, ending it with two consecutive aces to overwhelm the fifth-ranked men’s player in the world. After losing the first set in a tiebreaker, the 14th-ranked Isner won the next two sets by scores of 6-4, 6-4.
“I was just ready for this moment,” Isner said in a TV interview just after the match ended.
The victory will move Isner up to ninth in the world rankings from 17th.
It was the 13th tournament title for the 32-year-old from Greensboro, North Carolina, but the most significant. It is his first Masters 1000 win, which ranks behind the four Grand Slam events and the ATP Finals in prestige.
He had reached the final with a 6-1, 7-6 win Friday in the semifinals against Argentina’s Juan Martin del Potro. Del Potro was ranked sixth in the world and Zverez fifth entering Miami. Isner also defeated world No. 3 Marin Cilic of Croatia in the round of 16.
Isner joins fellow Americans Sloane Stephens, and Bob and Mike Bryan as 2018 Miami Open champs. Stephens, a 2016 Olympian and 2017 US Open champion, won the women’s singles title Saturday. The Bryans, three-time Olympians, won in men’s doubles on Saturday.
Isner made his Olympic debut at the Olympic Games London 2012, reaching the quarterfinals before he was defeated by eventual silver medalist Roger Federer.
Paul D. Bowker has been writing about Olympic sports since 1996, when he was an assistant bureau chief in Atlanta. He is sports editor of the Cape Cod Times and a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.