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On this day: John Isner, Nicolas Mahut play out longest match ever at Wimbledon

It is 10 years to the day since the longest match in tennis history in both number of games - 183 - and time.

The longest match in tennis history was completed at Wimbledon on this day in 2010.

Here, the PA news agency looks back at American John Isner's epic victory over Frenchman Nicolas Mahut in the men's singles.

Isner holds his nerve

Isner celebrates his famous victory after finally breaking Mahut's serve in the fifth set - two days after they started the match
Isner celebrates his famous victory after finally breaking Mahut's serve in the fifth set – two days after they started the match (PA)

Isner finally broke the serve of Mahut to secure an unforgettable 70-68 victory in the deciding set of their first-round encounter, which spanned over three days.

After 11 hours and five minutes on Court 18 and with a raft of records having been broken, 23rd seed Isner found two crucial winners to break his opponent's resistance in the 138th game of an astonishing set.

The pair had first walked on court at 6.13pm on Tuesday, June 22 and Isner secured a 6-4 3-6 6-7 (7/9) 7-6 (7/3) 70-68 triumph at 4.47pm on Thursday, June 24 to bring the curtain down on one of the most remarkable episodes in the All England Club's history.

Records tumbled...

The match remains by far the longest in tennis history in both number of games – 183 – and time. The final set alone, which lasted eight hours and 11 minutes, was longer than the previous longest match.

The previous grand slam record was six hours and 33 minutes set by Fabrice Santoro and Arnaud Clement at the French Open in 2004.

Prior to Isner's marathon win the previous record for games played in a match was 122, set in 1973 in a Davis Cup match when the USA's Stan Smith and Erik Van Dillen defeated Chile's Patricio Cornejo and Jaime Fillol 7–9 37–39 8–6 6–1 6–3.

The previous record for most games in a singles match was 112, set in 1969 when Pancho Gonzales beat Charlie Pasarell 22–24 1–6 16–14 6–3 11–9, also in the first round at Wimbledon.

...And more records tumbled

A plaque at Wimbledon commemorates the titanic match
A plaque at Wimbledon commemorates the titanic match (Rebecca Naden/PA)

Isner, 6ft 10in, and Mahut set a new record for the highest number of aces in a match – 215.

Ivo Karlovic and Radek Stepanek fired down 96 aces between them in the 2009 Davis Cup semi-final tie between Croatia and the Czech Republic, but Isner smashed 112 to set a new individual record, while Mahut weighed in with 103.

Both players surpassed Croatian Ivo Karlovic's previous record of 78 aces that he served in a Davis Cup match against the Czech Republic's Radek Stepanek in September 2009.

Isner and Mahut's titanic battle also set new records for consecutive service games held in a match (168), most games won in a match by both winning player (92) and losing player (91), most points played in a match (980) and most points won in a match (Mahut 502, Isner 478).

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John Isner and Nicolas Mahut pictured at Wimbledon after playing out the longest tennis match ever
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A look back at the longest tennis match of all time

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Wednesday's key events

· Team GB have dominated the men's coxless fours in recent Olympics, winning on each of the last five occasions, but this year they face some stiff competition. They are one of four rowing medal contenders for Great Britain today (2.10am)

· Katie Ledecky and Ariarne Titmus face off again in the women's 200m freestyle final, with the latter having already come out on top in the 400m event (2.41am)
· Team GB's Abbie Wood is among the medal contenders in the women's 200m individual medley final, while teammate Alicia Wilson will also take part. USA's Kate Douglass was the fastest qualifier, while world and Olympic record holder Katinka Hosszu is also involved (3.45am)
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· Team GB take on New Zealand in the first men's semi-final, having been beaten by reigning champions Fiji but then come from behind to overcome USA on day two (3am)
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· Joe Fraser and James Hall compete for Team GB in the men's all-around final (11.15am-2.10pm)

· Anna Shackley will take part in the women's road time trial (from 3.30am)
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· Jack Laugher bids to retain his men's 3m synchro diving title alongside new partner Daniel Goodfellow (7am)

· Charlotte Dujardin will look to add to her already legendary status with a third successive Olympic individual dressage title (9.30am-1.25pm)

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