Houston Open news: Reilly Opelka wins battle of the serves in the final against John Isner

The Houston Open final was contested by two towering Amercians on Sunday evening, with the 6ft 11" Reilly Opelka coming out on top in the final.

Both players thrive when it comes to serving, with Reilly Opelka and John Isner both boasting an abundance of athletic ability.

It made for thrilling viewing as the two American stars went toe-to-toe in Houston, with Opelka scoring 10 aces throughout the match while Isner managed eight of his own.

But when the serves were actually returned, it was Opelka who had the advantage, and the 24-year-old star managed a straight-set win in the final, beating Isner 6-3 7-6(7) after an hour and 50 minutes of action.

As the duo took to the court at the River Oaks Country Club, it was revealed that the towering Americans broke the record for holding the tallest match in the ATP Tour open era, with Opelka standing at 6ft 11" and Isner at 6ft 10".

It was obvious from the first serve that breaks would be hard to come by during the match, with both players using their athleticism to send powerful serves whistling over the net.

However Opelka managed the only break of the first set, before stubbornly holding on and seeing out his serves to crawl into the lead.

In the second, Isner was able to put his compatriot on the back foot, forcing Opelka to save three set points on the way to a dramatic tie-break.

However Opelka eventually edged the tie-break 9-7 to beat the veteran Isner, who turns 37 in two weeks time.

The win handed Opelka his fourth ATP title, and it was his first on clay, filling him with confidence for the upcoming tournaments next month.

Following the match, Opelka paid huge respect to his opponent, who he labelled an "idol".

"He was my idol growing up as a kid, and before I even met him, I liked him. But since we've become such good friend and spent so much time on Tour, I like him even more now," said Opelka.

"He's been an unbelievable role model for not just myself, [but] Taylor Fritz, Frances Tiafoe and Tommy Paul. We all say the same. He's been an unbelievable competitor for a long time."

Isner joked about Opelka's impressive record against him throughout his career, before echoing the kind words.

"We've played a handful of times and you keep on beating me. I hate you for that!

"But it was really cool to play you in a final. I think that's very unique. Obviously there are a lot of similarities between Reilly and I, but I'm much older than him and he has a lot more years ahead of him on Tour, so for me to get to play you in a final, I think that's very, very special."

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