Kevin Anderson will become the first South African to compete in a US Open Final in 52 years when he takes on Rafael Nadal in New York on Sunday night. It has been a long road for the world number 32.
Kevin Anderson hauled his 2.02-meter (6 feet 6 inches) frame up into his team’s box to kiss his wife Kelsey after securing a place in the 2017 US Open Final – the first Grand Slam final of his career.
"Getting to this final means the world to me, I’m on cloud nine," said the giant South African after beating Spain’s Pablo Carrano Busta in just under three hours. "It has been a long journey to get here."
Indeed, it has taken 34 attempts for the 31-year-old to reach a major final. This season he has had to battle with injury too, a hip operation keeping him out of the Australian Open earlier this year.
Now Anderson is set to become the first South African to contest a US Open final for 52 years and, at 32 in the world, the lowest ranked player to make the final in the Big Apple since the introduction of the computer ranking system in 1973.
Nadal as passionate as ever
But the man waiting for him on the other side of the net is likely to pose an even greater challenge than the mountainous climb up the stands of the Arthur Ashe Stadium.