Goran Ivanisevic calls for end to epic fifth sets

Ivanisevic wants fifth-set changes
© PA Photos
Former Wimbledon winner Goran Ivanisevic calls for all Grand Slams to adopt fifth-set tie-breakers to avoid lengthy matches that give the victors little time to recover.

Former Wimbledon champion Goran Ivanisevic has declared that the time is right to introduce fifth-set tie-breakers in all four Grand Slams to keep competition fair.

Defending Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic was involved in en epic five-set battle with Stanislas Wawrinka on Sunday, eventually prevailing 12-10 in the fifth set after five hours of play.

John Isner and Nicolas Mahut famously showed how far the limits of a deciding set can be pushed in 2010, with their 70-68 fifth set at Wimbledon forcing the match into a third day at over 11 hours of play.

Ivanisevic thinks that all Grand Slams should follow the US Open in allowing the match to be decided by a tie-breaker if the players are level at 6-6 in the fifth to give the winner a fair chance to recover.

He told The Age: "I think they should have every Grand Slam tie-breaker in the fifth set, like US Open, because you can shorten the match like [Sunday] night for at least one hour, and is big difference.

"Four hours or five hours is huge difference. So yes to a tie-breaker in the fifth set. I know it's like roulette, but still it's great for the spectator, it's exciting and it's fun.

"How do you expect these guys to play? Not even in one month they cannot play, they cannot recover, so with a tie-breaker you avoid that, you avoid ridiculous long matches."

The 41-year-old is currently competing in the Legends tournament at Melbourne Park with doubles partner Cedric Pioline.

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