By Jim Keller


It will be John Isner - Nicolas Mahut part two at Wimbledon.

After playing the longest match ever - 11 hours and five minutes last season over three days - the two will battle again in a first-round match at the England Club in the tournament that begins Monday.

Andy Murray described last year's match on Twitter as "the most amazing thing I've seen in tennis,"while Croatian star Ivo Karlovic tweeted: "That should be the only match of the day on that court. Unless they wanna waste three days again."

According to a report on the Independent, mathematicians put the odds against the players meeting at the same stage of the tournament for the second year in succession at 14,000-1.

"It's almost cruel," Isner said after learning of the draw. "I joked actually with Nic a week ago. I texted him: 'Watch us play first round.' He said: 'No man, that's not cool!' I've already spoken to him today. We were supposed to practice tomorrow, but we're not now. It's too weird."

"We might do dinner. We're really good friends now. Obviously we both want to win, but we're going to enjoy it and laugh at it at the same time."

Mahut was in the Wimbledon locker room when he heard the news. "It's just crazy. It's funny because last week I had talked with my coach about playing him again here and we said it would be impossible to play him in the first round," he said.

Isner, a 26-year-old American, and Mahut, a 29-year-old Frenchman, barely knew each before they met last year but have become close since sharing such an extraordinary piece of sporting history.

The match, which Isner won 70-68 in the final set, took 4 1-2 hours more to complete than the previous longest contest. It broke a host of other records, including the longest single set (eight hours, 11 minutes) and the most aces in a match and by an individual (Isner finished with 112 and Mahut 105).

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Marathon Men John Isner - Nicolas Mahut Gear Up For Part Two At Wimbledon