LONDON - It was 11 years ago, UGA’s John Isner had to beat Kevin Anderson to lead the Bulldogs to an NCAA title.
Now, the two will square off for a chance to go to the finals in arguably the most famous tennis tournament in the world.
Isner beat Milos Raonic of Canada 6-7 (5), 7-6 (7), 6-4, 6-3 Wednesday to set up a meeting with South Africa’s Anderson in Wimbledon's last four.
This will be the hard-serving American’s first Grand Slam semifinal in his 41st appearance.
Isner's 41 attempts to make a semifinal at a major is the second most in the 50-year professional era, behind Sam Querrey, who made the last four at Wimbledon last year with his 42nd try.
Isner has yet to be broken at this year's tournament and saved the only break point he faced on Wednesday. Raonic hit 31 aces to Isner's 25 but was broken three times, including the last game of the match.
He also becomes just the fifth American since 2005 to advance to the semifinals of a Grand Slam event.
Anderson held off a match point to defeat defending champion Roger Federer, 2-6, 6-7 (5), 7-5, 6-4, 13-11 in another quarterfinal match.
The victory sets up a contest between two former college tennis greats this Friday. Ironically, the two met during the NCAA national championship match in 2007, with Isner taking a 6-1, 7-6 (1) win enroute to a national title and perfect 32-0 record for the Bulldogs. Isner also owns an 8-3 head-to-head record against Anderson during his pro career.
Isner is in search of more history on Friday as he looks to become the first former Georgia men’s tennis player to advance to the finals of a Grand Slam singles event since Mikael Pernfors made the finals of the French Open in 1986.
A native of Greensboro, N.C., Isner was a four-time All-American at Georgia from 2004-07. He holds the school record for career singles (138), doubles (138), and combined (276) wins.