Mardy Fish battled cramps in the final set of a valiant final match of his professional tennis career Wednesday, losing in hard-fought sets at the U.S. Open in Flushing Meadows, New York.
Fish, a native of Edina, Minnesota, lost in five sets to 18th-ranked Feliciano Lopez (6-2, 3-6, 6-1, 5-7, 3-6).
Fish had a chance to end the match by winning the fourth set, but Lopez rallied for a 7-5 set win to force the fifth and final set in which Fish battled leg cramps throughout.
Lopez said Fish deserved to win the match.
Fish knew his end was near, and he's going out on his own terms just 18 months removed from taking a sabbatical from tennis following anxiety attacks that derailed his past top 10 world ranking.
In many ways, Fish's return to Flushing Meadows for his favorite tournament, is a victory over the anxiety that once dominated him. That's why losing the tournament doesn't bother him.
"This isn’t a sports movie, of course, and there won’t be a sports movie ending. I won’t be riding off into the sunset, lifting a trophy. I’m not going to win the tournament.But that’s fine by me — because honestly, this isn’t a sports story. And I think it’s important that my story not have a sports vocabulary. I didn’t “choke” in Act Two, and I’m not going to “win” in Act Three.This is a life story."