Denis Istomin

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This article is about the tennis player. For the ice hockey player, see Denis Istomin (ice hockey).
This name uses Eastern Slavic naming customs; the patronymic is Olegovich and the family name is Istomin.
Denis Istomin
Country (sports)  Uzbekistan
Residence Tashkent, Uzbekistan
Born (1986-09-07) 7 September 1986 (age 29)
Orenburg, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)[1]
Turned pro 2008
Plays Right-handed (two-handed backhand)
Prize money US$4,214,904
Career record 185–191
Career titles 1
Highest ranking No. 33 (13 August 2012)
Current ranking No. 97 (11 July 2016)
Grand Slam Singles results
Australian Open 3R (2010, 2014)
French Open 2R (2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014)
Wimbledon 4R (2012)
US Open 4R (2013)
Other tournaments
Olympic Games 3R (2012)
Career record 79–112
Career titles 3
Highest ranking No. 59 (8 October 2012)
Current ranking No. 103 (1 February 2016)
Grand Slam Doubles results
Australian Open 2R (2012)
French Open 3R (2011, 2012)
Wimbledon 3R (2012)
US Open 2R (2011, 2015)
Last updated on: 1 February 2016.

Denis Olegovich Istomin (born 7 September 1986, Orenburg, Russian SFSR) is an Uzbek tennis player. He has won one singles title (at the 2015 Aegon Open Nottingham)[2] and achieved a career-high singles ranking of world No. 33 in August 2012.


Denis Istomin was born in Orenburg to Oleg and Klaudiya Istomin. His father, an Uzbek, moved the family to Tashkent, when Denis was 3 months old. Denis is coached by his mother, who introduced him to the sport at an early age.[3] Injuries resulting from a car crash in 2001 en route to an event kept Istomin away from tennis for 2 years, with doctors initially stating that he would never hold a racquet again. Despite this, Istomin resumed training in April 2003.[citation needed]



Istomin broke into the top–200 late in 2005 and finished the year at No. 196. He won his first Challenger tournament in Bukhara.[4]


Istomin received the Asian wildcard into the 2006 Australian Open, where he played world No. 1 Roger Federer. Federer won in straight sets. He spent much of 2006 in the top 200, reaching a career-high of No. 186 on 1 May, and finished the year at No. 200 in singles.[citation needed]


Istomin was slightly less successful in 2007, spending the entire year outside the top 200 in singles, but rallying towards the end of the year to finish at No. 230, again claiming the Asian Wild card for the 2008 Australian Open. In any case, he won two Challenger titles, Karshi and, for a second time, Bukhara.[5] He had a better year in doubles, however, and reached his career-high of No. 157 on 18 June.[citation needed]


Istomin entered the 2008 Australian Open as the Asian wild card. He lost in the second round to local favorite Lleyton Hewitt in four sets. Following successful results in a number of Challenger tournaments (including Karshi for the second time and Bukhara for the third time[6]), he finished the season ranked No. 105.


Istomin again received the Asian wild card into the 2009 Australian Open. He played Vincent Spadea of the USA in the first round and won in straight sets.[7] He lost to Richard Gasquet in the second round. He had a more successful year, breaking into the top 100 for the first time and reaching world No. 56 in July. This ranking rise qualified him for main draw entry into the other Grand Slam tournaments. His best performance in the remaining Grand Slam events came at the 2009 US Open, where he reached the third round by defeating American wildcard Brendan Evans in straight sets, before earning a hard fought win against Nicolás Lapentti in a fifth set tiebreak. He then lost against Marin Cilic in straight sets.[citation needed]


Istomin first competed in the 2010 Aircel Chennai Open, but was defeated in the first round by Dudi Sela. He then participated in the 2010 Australian Open. In the first round he routed No. 32 seed Jérémy Chardy and then defeated Michael Berrer in the second round. Istomin was defeated in the third round by No. 3 seed Novak Djokovic. He made his first semi-final at an ATP level tournament at the 2010 SAP Open, in San Jose. After beating Ryan Harrison in the opening round, he went on to beat fourth seed Tommy Haas and sixth seed Philipp Kohlschreiber en route to his first semis appearance. There, he lost to No. 2 seed Fernando Verdasco. At the 2010 Pilot Pen Tennis Istomin advanced to his first ATP Final, but was defeated by Sergiy Stakhovsky in three sets. This, along with third round appearances at Wimbledon and the French Open in 2010, sent him to his career high ranking of 39 on 30 August.[citation needed]

At the 2010 US Open Istomin defeated Máximo González in the first round. He was later defeated by No. 1 seed and eventual winner Rafael Nadal in the second round. Following this his ranking slipped down to No. 42. At the 2010 Asian Games tennis finals, Istomin lost to India's Somdev Devvarman in straight sets.[8]


Istomin started the year at number 40 in the ATP rankings,[9] but had a poor run in the Australian swing, starting the year with a second round exit in Brisbane and then losing first round matches in the next two weeks in Sydney and then in the Australian Open.

He then reached the quarter-finals in San Jose until being stopped by Fernando Verdasco, then the world no. 9, before losing again two first rounds in a row in Memphis and Indian Wells. In the following week, Istomin reached the second round of Key Biscayne (losing to then world number 2, and triple Grand Slam winner that year, Novak Djokovic), before making another three consecutive first round exits on the clay circuit (Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Munich). After this he reached the second round in Nice on the lead-up to his second Grand Slam of the season, Roland Garros, where he lost his first round match to Italy's Fabio Fognini.

Istomin's poor run continued on grass, with first round exits at Queen's and Eastbourne. Istomin then beat Philipp Kohlschreiber in Wimbledon but lost to Mardy Fish, a top ten player then, in the second round. Amidst the European summer, he then returned to clay and made a second-round exit in Gstaad in between first-round losses in Hamburg and Kitzbuhel. By mid-August, Istomin's ranking had slipped to 81 after a prolonged form slump. He travelled to his home country, Uzbekistan, to compete in two Challengers (Samarkand and Karshi), both of which won. It was his third victory in the Karshi Challenger.

He then moved to the US hard courts, losing in the second round of both the new Winston-Salem Open and the US Open, beaten by Julien Benneteau. Following the US Open, Istomin returned to the Challenger circuit, where he won consecutive tournaments in Istanbul and Tashkent. In the Istanbul final he beat Philipp Kohlschreiber, whom he had also beaten in Wimbledon. This was Istomin's first tournament victory outside Uzbekistan in his career. He had an uneventful end of the season, with a second round loss to Viktor Troicki in Kuala Lumpur's indoor courts, and, failing to qualify for further ATP 250, ATP 500 and ATP 1000 tournaments, ended the season with two early exit showings in the Bratislava and Helsinki Challengers. He finished the year at the 74th place of the rankings, still well inside the top-100[10]


Istomin defeated both Florian Mayer and Tommy Haas en route to a quarter-final loss to Bernard Tomic, in Brisbane. Still ranked No. 73 after the tournament, Istomin had to play the qualifying in Sydney, winning his three matches to qualify to the main draw, where he had an impressive run into the semi-finals as he swept past Pablo Andujar, Ryan Sweeting and 18-ranked Richard Gasquet, before losing to Jarkko Nieminen. The following week, at the Australian Open, Istomin was stopped by World No. 6 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the first round.[11]

In February 2012, Istomin advanced to SAP Open finals, losing to defending champion Milos Raonic of Canada. After a first round loss in Memphis, and a second round loss in Delray Beach, Florida, he played one of his most successful tournaments at the Indian Wells Masters. He made the fourth round of the tournament (his previous best at a Masters tournament was the second round), beating No. 32 seed Juan Ignacio Chela and then the No. 5 player in the world, David Ferrer. He lost to Juan Martin Del Potro to end his run. After nearly all first round defeats leading up to the French Open, his ranking was at 43 going into the tournament, losing to Rafael Nadal in the second round.[12][citation needed]

Following a second round loss at London/Queen's Club and a quarterfinal at Eastbourne, Istomin entered the reached the fourth round of Wimbledon, becoming the first tennis player from Uzbekistan, man or woman, to make the fourth round of a Grand Slam. He lost in five sets to Mikhail Youzhny to end his bid for a quarterfinal appearance. At the Olympics, representing Uzbekistan, Istomin made the round of 16, losing to eventual silver medalist Roger Federer.[13] During the USA hard court swing, Istomin made the second round of the Cincinnati Masters. At the US Open, he lost in the first round to Jurgen Zopp. He finished the year poorly, losing in all remaining tournaments in either the first or second round. During the Davis Cup that year, Istomin nearly led Uzbekistan to a World Group spot; Uzbekistan defeated New Zealand and India, but lost to Kazakhstan in the final playoff round.


In January, Istomin advanced to the quarter-finals of the Brisbane International with wins over Martin Kližan and Lleyton Hewitt but was defeated by eventual champion Andy Murray. He then went on to enter the Apia International in Sydney, winning his first round and second round matches against James Duckworth and Fernando Verdasco to advance to the quarter-finals. He then lost to South African Kevin Anderson. Istomin reached the semi-finals of the U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships where he beat John Isner, Lleyton Hewitt and Michael Russell before losing to eventual champion Feliciano Lopez. At the Rogers Cup third round, he challenged No.1 Novak Djokovic, winning the first set 6-2 before losing 6-4 in a close third set.[citation needed]


Istomin would start the new year 'Down Under' in the 2014 Apia International Sydney Tournament. He beat his first round opponent Pablo Andújar in straight sets 6-1, 6-2. He then pulled off a huge upset to down 7th seed Croatian player Marin Cilic, 6-3, 6-4.


Istomin won his first ATP world tour title at the Nottingham Open, where he defeated Sam Querrey in the final. Istomin also won a doubles title with Alexander Bury later that year.


Istomin has yet to win a single match on the ATP Tour losing in the first round in all tournaments entered including the Australian Open. His lone solitary win in March was in 2016 Irving Challenger where he beat John-Patrick Smith of Australia.

On Court[edit]

Istomin employs a primarily defensive playstyle around the baseline, using his consistent groundstrokes to build points or wear his opponents down. He has no major weapons in his game, with both his forehand and backhand being equally solid. Rarely coming up to the net, he plays most comfortably behind the baseline with his speed and consistency. However, when playing against aggressive opponents or when attacking, he has been known to hit some extreme pacey or angled shots. His defensive ability has also been praised, such as his ability to retrieve angled shots and his speed.

His serve is not especially strong, but he can hit up to 210 km/h on his first serve. He mixes slice and top-spin for his second serve.

His weaknesses are his over-defensiveness and lack of significant variety in his game. He rarely pro-actively plays aggressively and often gives his opponents too much opportunity to attack and win points quickly. He also rarely uses variety such as drop-shots and volleys in his game, although he has a good lob.

On court, he is known to be a bit of a showman sometimes, occasionally making high-risk plays, sometimes purely for entertainment value. Because of this, he usually attains the support of the crowd. For example, he played Novak Djokovic in the third round of the Australian Open in 2014. Despite being two sets down and possibly facing a break, he played what was considered by some to be the "Perfect Game". He won all four points in the game consecutively with an ace down the middle, a running cross-court forehand passing shot, a backhand cross-court that was placed exactly on the line and an around-the-net backhand from behind the baseline, all of which were considered extremely risky shots. By the end of the game, most of the crowd were vouching for Istomin instead of the fan-favourite Djokovic. Djokovic himself jokingly boo-ed the umpire for calling "out" on Istomin's serve, mimicking the crowd's support for Istomin.

He is also known as one of the only top ATP Professional players, along with Janko Tipsarević, to wear spectacles while playing (most players either have near perfect eyesight or wear contact lenses, Novak Djokovic being an example of the latter).

ATP career finals[edit]

Singles: 3 (1 title, 2 runners-up)[edit]

Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)
ATP World Tour Finals (0–0)
ATP World Tour Masters 1000 (0–0)
ATP World Tour 500 Series (0–0)
ATP World Tour 250 Series (1–2)
Titles by Surface
Hard (0–2)
Grass (1–0)
Clay (0–0)
Carpet (0–0)
Outcome No. Date Championship Surface Opponent Score
Runner-up 1. 28 August 2010 Pilot Pen Tennis, New Haven, United States Hard Ukraine Sergiy Stakhovsky 6–3, 3–6, 4–6
Runner-up 2. 19 February 2012 SAP Open, San Jose, United States Hard (i) Canada Milos Raonic 6–7(3–7), 6–7(6–8)
Winner 1. 27 June 2015 Nottingham Open, Nottingham, United Kingdom Grass United States Sam Querrey 7–6(7–1), 7–6(8–6)

Doubles: 5 (3 titles, 2 runners-up)[edit]

Grand Slam tournaments (0–0)
ATP World Tour Finals (0–0)
ATP World Tour Masters 1000 (0–0)
ATP World Tour 500 Series (0–1)
ATP World Tour 250 Series (3–1)
Finals by Surface
Hard (2–2)
Clay (1–0)
Grass (0–0)
Carpet (0–0)
Outcome No. Date Tournament Surface Partner Opponents Score
Runner-up 1. 7 October 2012 China Open, Beijing, China Hard Argentina Carlos Berlocq United States Bob Bryan
United States Mike Bryan
3–6, 2–6
Runner-up 2. 22 September 2013 St. Petersburg Open, St. Petersburg, Russia Hard (i) United Kingdom Dominic Inglot Spain David Marrero
Spain Fernando Verdasco
6–7(6–8), 3–6
Winner 1. 19 October 2013 Kremlin Cup, Moscow, Russia Hard (i) Russia Mikhail Elgin United Kingdom Ken Skupski
United Kingdom Neal Skupski
6–2, 1–6, [14–12]
Winner 2. 9 February 2014 Open Sud de France, Montpellier, France Hard (i) Russia Nikolay Davydenko France Marc Gicquel
France Nicolas Mahut
6–4, 1–6, [10–7]
Winner 3. 2 August 2015 Swiss Open, Gstaad, Switzerland Clay Belarus Aliaksandr Bury Austria Oliver Marach
Pakistan Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi
3–6, 6–2, [10–5]

Singles performance timeline[edit]

(W) Won tournament; reached (F) final, (SF) semifinal, (QF) quarterfinal; (R#) rounds 4, 3, 2, 1; competed at a (RR) round-robin stage; reached a (Q#) qualification round; (A) absent from tournament; played in a (Z#) Davis/Fed Cup Zonal Group (with number indication) or (PO) play-off; won a (G) gold, (F-S) silver or (SF-B) bronze Olympic medal; a (NMS) downgraded Masters Series/1000 tournament; or (NH) tournament not held.
To avoid confusion and double counting, these charts are updated either at the conclusion of a tournament, or when the player's participation in the tournament has ended.

Current till 2016 Wimbledon Championships.

Tournament 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 W–L
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open 1R Q1 2R 2R 3R 1R 1R 2R 3R 1R 1R 7–10
French Open A A Q1 2R 2R 1R 2R 2R 2R 1R 1R 5–8
Wimbledon A A A 1R 3R 2R 4R 1R 3R 1R 3R 10–8
US Open A A A 3R 2R 2R 1R 4R 1R 2R 8–7
Win–Loss 0–1 0–0 1–1 4–4 6–4 2–4 4–4 5–4 5–4 1–4 2–3 30–33
Olympic Games
Summer Olympics Not Held A Not Held 3R Not Held 2–1
ATP Masters Series
Indian Wells Masters A A A A A 1R 4R 2R 1R 2R 1R 5–6
Miami Masters A A A A 1R 2R 1R 1R 3R 1R 2R 4–7
Monte Carlo Masters A A A A A 1R 1R 1R Q1 Q2 Q1 0–3
Rome Masters A A A A A A 1R 2R A Q1 A 1–2
Madrid Masters A A A A A A 1R 2R A A 2R 2–3
Canada Masters A A A A 1R A A 3R 1R A 2–3
Cincinnati Masters A A A A 2R A 2R 1R 1R Q2 2–4
Shanghai Masters NMS A 1R A 2R A 1R A 1–3
Paris Masters A A A A 1R Q1 1R 1R 1R A 0–4
Win–Loss 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 1–5 1–3 5–8 5–8 2–6 1–2 2–3 17–35
Career Statistics
Titles–Finals 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–0 0–1 0–0 0–1 0–0 0–0 1–1 0–0 1–3
Year End Ranking 200 230 105 102 40 72 43 45 49 61

Doubles performance timeline[edit]

Current through 2014 Wimbledon.

Tournament 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 W–L
Grand Slam tournaments
Australian Open A A 1R 2R 1R 1R 1–4
French Open A 2R 3R 3R 2R 1R 6–5
Wimbledon A 1R 1R 3R 1R 1R 2–5
US Open 1R 1R 2R 1R 1R 1–5
Win–Loss 0–1 1–3 3–4 5–4 1–4 0–3 10–19


  1. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  2. ^
  3. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  4. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  5. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  6. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  7. ^ 2009 Australian Open – Men's Singles#Section 1
  8. ^ "Asian Games: Somdev Devvarman wins seventh gold for India". The Times of India. 23 November 2010. Retrieved 23 November 2010. 
  9. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  10. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  11. ^ Profile,; accessed 31 May 2014.
  12. ^ "French Open 2012: All the results from the men's and women's singles". Mail Online. Retrieved 2016-04-16. 
  13. ^ "Denis Istomin Bio, Stats, and Results". Olympics at Retrieved 2016-04-16. 

External links[edit]