Somdev Devvarman was the last Indian singles player to reach this far in an ATP Tour event. With Ramkumar's defeat, India's quest for a singles trophy continues with the last coming in 1998 courtesy Leander Paes in Newport.
This is the first time in seven years any Indian reaches the semi-finals on the ATP circuit. "I played the big points really well". "He said I have the game and before every match he talks to me, which gives me confidence".
Johnson arrived in Newport with only one ATP win on grass this spring but he played on a high level at his home event to lift the second crowd of the season and he is the only player who has claimed titles on clay and grass in 2018.
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While he staged a comeback of sorts in the second set, with an early break and much more attacking returns, he couldn't keep up the momentum losing his serve in the very first game of the decider.
There, Ramanathan served at only 45% and his second serve let him down, getting broken in game two after a forehand cross court victor from Johnson. He didn't have any trouble in closing out the opener. "He was phenomenal around the net and I was just happy to take care of my one chance in the first set and get a lead and buckle down in the third". Following the second set, Johnson received treatment on his right shoulder. With the scoreline reading 3-0, it was a massive ask for Ramkumar even with Johnson serving poorly.
Ramkumar would rue not making most of Johnson's poor first serve in the match and despite the serve troubles, the world no 48 won 83% of his first serve points.