Andy Murray bars Kevin Anderson`s path to Grand Slam breakthrough
South Africa`s Kevin Anderson, into his eighth Grand Slam fourth round with nary a quarter-final played, will try to reach the US Open last eight Monday by ousting Andy Murray.
New York: South Africa`s Kevin Anderson, into his eighth Grand Slam fourth round with nary a quarter-final played, will try to reach the US Open last eight Monday by ousting Andy Murray.
The lanky 29-year-old big server advanced to the last 16 on the New York hardcourts for the first time Saturday by defeating Austrian 20th seed Dominic Thiem 6-3, 7-6 (7/3), 7-6 (7/3) after two hours and 29 minutes.
"I`m feeling really good out there," Anderson said. "I`m trying to keep things simple. I`m playing good tennis."
Anderson`s fourth-round defeats have come at the past three Australian Opens, the 2013 and 2014 French Opens and the 2014 and 2015 Wimbledons, with Murray inflicting the first of those London defeats.
Reaching a quarter-final at long last in his deepest US Open run would be a thrill for Anderson, who is at a career-high 14th in the ATP rankings.
"It would mean a lot," he said. "I`ve been in the fourth round a few times now. It`s my first time here. It`s a small step in the right direction. My goal coming in was to have this opportunity."
British third seed Murray, the 2012 US Open and 2013 Wimbledon champion, advanced by ousting Brazil`s Thomaz Bellucci 6-3, 6-2, 7-5, and contemplated facing Anderson next.
"It`ll be a tough match," Murray said. "He has had some good wins here. He serves extremely well and doesn`t give you too many chances."
The 28-year-old Scotsman figures to be a tough recipient for Anderson`s trademark fiery serves.
"He makes it tough, makes a lot of returns, reads the serve well," Anderson said.
"On my side, it will be all about focus on my spots and be ready for the ball to come back fast. With Andy, you definitely have to be ready for the next ball."
Murray is 5-1 lifetime against Anderson, whose lone win over him came in 2011 in Canada.
Murray`s wins include the first round of the 2010 Australian Open, the fourth round last year at Wimbledon, a 2014 Valencia quarter-final, the fourth round at Miami this year and the Queen`s final last June.
"We`ve played a few times," Anderson said. "He has gotten the better of me a few times. I have my work cut out for me. It`s a new match, different venue. I`ll be ready."
Anderson will try to set aside past failures at the last-16 hurdle rather than use them as a motivational tool in quest of his long-sought breakthrough.
"I try to isolate it and separate it from the next match," said Anderson. "Thinking about it is not going to do any good."
Anderson snapped a seven-match losing streak in tournament finals last month by capturing his third career ATP title at Winston-Salem.