Yesterday, September 2nd 2015, Feliciano Lopez from Spain faced the United State’s very own Mardy Fish, resulting in one of the most intense matches the US Open has seen thus far. Though this loss marked Fish’s last match of not only his time at the US Open for this season, but for his professional tennis career, Fish was applauded for his successful career as a whole.
Fish noted that now is the time for his tennis career to come to an end, and this second-round defeat yesterday proved he was right – and honest, a trait his fans admire. After a five-set, the scores were: 2-6, 6-3, 1-6, 7-5, 6-3. Fish noted in an interview recorded by Richard Osborn after the match, “‘That probably wouldn’t have happened a few years ago. I probably would have been fine in the fifth set. I worked as hard as I could. My body is just about don. I gave it everything I had,’” (USOpen.org,Day 3 Match of the Day). After winning over 300 matches in his career, including six title and an Olympic silver medal, Fish recognized his physical exhaustion and was not afraid to admit it.
Lopez also noted his opponent’s fatigue, and took full advantage of it. Neck-and-neck in a 5-4 match during the fourth set, Lopez turned the heat up and capitalized on a double fault three unforced errors. As the 18th-seeded Spaniard used his energy to increase the game’s intensity, Fish began to cramp in the thick humidity and even called for a trainer as he trailed 4-3 in the sixth game of the stanza.
Many spectators and reporters wondered if he would quit right then and there, but Fish responded after the game, saying: “‘I wasn’t quitting, I was just cramping. Both sides of both legs, if I moved anywhere close to three of four steps, two or three steps, it would go. So, no, you would not have had to carry me off the court. I was definitely not stopping,’” (Osborn, Day 3 Match of the Day).
Though the match ended with Fish suffering on one leg, he played on – like a true warrior. Fish finished his career with a crowd applauding ferociously and echoing whistles throughout the stadium, a great memory to end on.