America's last survivor, No. 16 John Isner, has bit the dust. He lost his third round match to the underrated No. 18 Feliciano Lopez of Spain, 6-3, 6-7, 6-4, 6-7, 6-1. This marks the first time in the Open Era that no American male player has reach (at least) the 4th round at the Australian Open.
There is no question that American men's tennis needs to go back to the drawing board because it is getting UGLY. Having to depend on aging players like Mardy Fish and Andy Roddick is not going to cut it. The younger players like Isner, Sam Querrey, Donald Young and Ryan Sweeting have shown that they are not ready for the big stage and probably never will be. It's time for a drastic makeover at the youth tennis camps, America!
On other fronts--
Australian teenager Bernard Tomic has made a decent run by advancing to the 4th round. This is his best showing at the Aussie. He does however have a brutal date with World No. 3 Roger Federer in his next match. If we may remember, Tomic made headlines last year by reaching the quarterfinals at Wimbledon at the tender age of 18. Is there a star in the making?
The "comeback kid" No. 11 Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina has eased his way into the 4th round. Del Potro is starting to look like the player that shocked the world in 2009 when he stunned then-World No. 1 Roger Federer in the U.S. Open final. If he wins his 4th round match he will play the winner of the Federer-Tomic match in the quarterfinals. This part of the draw could get VERY, VERY interesting.