By Niall Clarke
- Andy Murray suffers shock loss to Kevin Anderson
- The South African prevailed 7-6(5) 6-3 6-7(2) 7-6(0)
- First time since the 2010 US Open Murray has lost before the quarter finals of a major.
NEW YORK, USA- Andy Murray is out of the US Open after suffering a shock defeat to 15th seed Kevin Anderson in the fourth round.
The pair rallied for four hours and 18 minutes but in the end it would be the South African who prevailed 7-6(5) 6-3 6-7(2) 7-6(0) as Murray saw his US Open chances flushed down the toilet.
It is the first time since the 2010 US Open Murray has lost before the quarter finals of a major event. Meanwhile, Anderson will contest his first quarter final against Stan Wawrinka on Thursday.
The 6ft8 Anderson- who was top of the ace chart for the tournament prior to the match with 69- looked to impose his will early with his serve and powerful ground strokes. However neither player could find a breakthrough which meant we were heading for a first set tiebreak.
The pair exchanged breaks twice in the breaker but ultimately the crucial mini break went to Anderson. The South African’s forehand did the damage on set point to give himself the lead.
Things got from bad to worse for Murray as Anderson began to hit a purple patch. He earned the first break of the match for 2-0 then went on to break again at 4-1 to put himself in a position to serve the set out. However things got a bit tight on Anderson’s side of the net, and Murray was able to earn one break back. However it was not enough as on the second time of asking, the 29 year old doubled his advantage by serving out the set 6-3.
An angry Murray cursed to himself at the chair for the two set deficit and then voiced his displeasure of the long comfort break Anderson took between the second and third set, asking umpire Jake Garner “what’s reasonable?” for such an interruption.
A clearly rattled Murray lost serve again at the start of the third set, but the Scot was not done yet. The 28 year old tried to rally the crowd on his side as he won three straight games to not only break back, but give himself the break advantage. However that was soon squandered as the 15th seed was able to break back, prompting Murray to smash his racket.
Just like the first set the players had to be separated by a tiebreaker, only this time with reverse results. Murray earned a 6-2 lead in the tiebreaker before sealing the third set with an ace. A pumped up Murray clenched his fist towards his team as the fight back was on.
This was the second time in the tournament that Murray would have to come from two sets down to win, but unlike Adrian Mannarino in round two, Anderson held strong.
Keen to avoid a repeat of the Wimbledon fourth round epic against Novak Djokovic, the South African held his nerve and held his serve to force yet another tiebreak. From here it was all Anderson.
The world number 14 raced to a 6-0 lead in the tiebreak and sealed it on the first match point to earn his first grand slam quarter final against Wawrinka.
“I’m a little lost for words right now,” Anderson said. “I just managed to keep my composure throughout.”
Murray’s defeat wrapped up a disappointing day for the Brits as Johanna Konta also saw her run come to an end at the hands of Petra Kvitova.
The Scot’s struggled on Louis Armstrong stadium in the past. He lost in the third round here against Wawrinka in 2010 and in his 2012 triumph he fell 6-3 5-1 down to Marin Cilic on this court.
Murray will now lead Great Britain in to the Davis Cup semi finals against Australia when the teams meet in Glasgow the week following the US Open.
You can follow the rest of the US Open tournament via the Britwatch Live Scores