- Judo brings in Team SA’s first medals of Games
- Footballers get Team SA off to winning start
- Team SA leads the way at Region 5 Games opening ceremony
- Stapleton flies flag for SA in India
- Judoka ready to get to grips for Team SA
- SA’s six Games boxers ready to take to the ring
- SA duo up for prestigious world awards
- SA youngsters aim for a repeat of 2014
- Health issues as South Africa play catch-up in India
- Team SA head off to Angola on Region 5 Games mission
Kevin into US final
- Updated: March 4, 2012
A sweet 16 aces saw our top-ranked Kevin Anderson into the final of the Delray Beach International tennis tournament in the US on Saturday night, writes Mark Etheridge.
Seeded seventh for the $450,000 event, Anderson downed top-seeded John Isner of America in a nail-biting encounter.
Playing on the Stadium Court, Anderson took just over and hour-and-half to progress to his third big final.
And, as expected, it was the tightest of affairs. Isner also sent down 16 aces (although he had three double-faults to none by Anderson). The two big servers both won exactly 87% of their first serve points and there was little to separate them in first serve percentage (69% to Isner and 65% to Anderson).
But it was Anderson who provided the only service break, at the back end of the first set. Where there was a slight difference was in second serve points won, where Anderson’s 67% comfortable beat Isner’s 43%.
Anderson started this tournament ranked 36th in the world to Isner’s 11th and is sure to rocket up the rankings this week.
The two are now all square in terms of wins against each other ÔÇô having each beaten the other three times.
“Today I thought I served incredibly better than my other matches. I knew I had to,” Anderson told the ATP Tour website. “I think maybe just playing against somebody who serves and volleys like John forced me to pick up my serving and I felt I matched him in that category.”
In the final Anderson comes up against Marinko Matosevic for the first time.”He’s had some tough ones this week against some really good guys,” said Anderson.
“He’s played some big servers, so I’m definitely going to have to be on my game tomorrow… [But] I’m feeling good. I’m just excited, that’s why you play. Each week you don’t always get the opportunity to go all the way through, so I’m just really excited to get that opportunity this week.”
Australian Matosevic, at 26 just a year older than Anderson, is currently ranked 173rd on the ATP rankings and Anderson now has a superb chance of winning his second big tournament, having won the Johannesburg Open last year.
Should he win the final Anderson will pick up $75,780 and just reaching the final has earned him $39,000.
His good form is certainly good news for South Africa with the Olympics coming up in London later this year. Such is the nature of his game that on his day he can beat most of the world’s top players, and can definitely be looked at in terms of medal potential.