This is the longest three-set match in the history as it lasted for four hours and three minutes.
That service hold - helped by a 129 miles per hour (207.6km/h) second serve - took the American to 100 service games unbroken at this Wimbledon.
The 2018 Wimbledon final features Serbian superstar Novak Djokovic, a three time Wimbledon champion, facing off with Kevin Anderson, a South African veteran in his second career Grand Slam final. Given that, this victory represents a big comeback; on Sunday he will have a crack at another Wimbledon title when he goes up against Kevin Anderson, a men's final that nobody could have predicted.
Djokovic, meanwhile, is seeking a 5th final at the All England Club and 22nd at the Slams.
Anderson will be playing in his second Major final after losing to Nadal at Flushing Meadows a year ago. There could be a rematch now.
The show being put on by Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal was so good it could have been an instant classic had they been able to finish their semi-final before the tournament's 11 pm curfew.
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So although he may remain an outsider to win the title - Anderson is [5.70] to Djokovic's [1.20] - it would be unwise to ignore his chances completely.
What was once a dark spot early in his career, Djokovic has become a master at grinding out long matches and he may have to rely on this against Anderson who has shown a propensity to come back from the dead a few times in this year's tournament. Each man also took a turn shouting toward the crowd after capturing a set, and Isner waved a hand toward the crowd during the third-set tiebreaker to generate more cheering.
"Of course, we want this trophy".
Anderson and Isner go way back, to their days when they played in college, Isner at Georgia, Anderson at IL. But, the two games will be airing on different TV stations so it is possible to switch between them to keep up with all the action.
The 6-foot-10 Isner and the 6-foot-8 Anderson had played 11 times before on tour, but they also faced each other in college, including in the 2007 NCAA finals, which Isner won. Isner and Anderson want the others to follow suit.
Isner labeled Wimbledon his "house of horrors" ever since that Mahut epic.
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But this one was as competitive and close as can be.
Djokovic was under the cosh in the next but two booming serves saved two break points and suddenly Nadal found himself at 0-30 as he served to stay in the match.
And the serving? Well, that was something else. In the six-plus hour match, he served 53 aces and hit 129 winners. Indeed, the only error the South African committed in the second set was on set point. Moments later, he got to love-40 before Nadal took five points in a row to serve out the set. "He's been gone for two years and needed that match to make this year important".
At 4-all in the fourth, it was Isner who faltered, getting broken. Could we be about to see the sixth and last break?
And there's going to be more of this because there are a lot of taller guys coming up with big serves and on grass we are going to get longer and longer matches.
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