NEW YORK — Third-seeded Andy Murray was upset in four sets by No. 15 Kevin Anderson, who advanced to his first-ever Grand Slam quarterfinals. Check out the Day 8 day session recap here, and catch up with news and results from Day 8 after 7 p.m. at the U.S. Open below.
No. 15 Kevin Anderson upsets No. 3 Andy Murray: Kevin Anderson has been close to reaching a Grand Slam quarterfinals, and he finally broke through at the 2015 U.S. Open. Anderson earned a spot in the quarters with a 7–6(5), 6–3, 6–7(2), 7–6(0) victory over Andy Murray, who leaves Flushing with his worst finish since 2010.
Anderson recorded a remarkable 81 winners against Murray, who tallied 49.
“I felt I played one of the best matches of my career,” Anderson said. “To do it at this stage, at this round, obviously to get through to the quarters the first time in a Slam definitely means a lot to me.”
Entering Monday, Murray was 5–1 against Anderson, but Murray was unable to find his game against the South African.
“It’s a tough match. [Louis Armstrong] is a lot quicker than Ashe. I felt like I was on the back foot quite a lot. Wasn’t able to play that offensively,” Murray said. “When you’re playing against someone that’s playing and has the game style that he does, you’re always going to have to do a fair bit of defending, especially if he serves well.”
Murray pointed to his inability to capitalize on a break opportunity down 5–3 in the second set as one of the match's critical moments. Anderson won the game and took a two sets to love lead.
“When I had the break point at 5–3, I had a backhand pass that I really should have made,” Murray said. “When you’re playing against players that are at that level, like him, you need to obviously make them think and then give them a chance to get nervous.”
Anderson will play No. 5 Stan Wawrinka, who beat American Donald Young earlier on Monday, in the quarterfinals. Anderson tallied four straight victories against Wawrinka, including a 7–6(4), 7–6(11) win over Wawrinka at Queen’s Club earlier this summer.
Anderson, who attended University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, downplayed his success against Wawrinka, saying that he expects his quarterfinal match to be as difficult as his win over Murray.
“It’s going to be a tough match. I think especially in the last few years, he’s really put himself up there as one of the main contenders for Slams. I really feel he’s playing some of his best tennis,” Anderson said of Wawrinka. “To win two Slams in the last year and a half is obviously a testament to that.”
Roger Federer bends, and then breaks John Isner: For two and a half hours, Roger Federer and John Isner stubbornly held serve. But on his 10th break point of the match, Federer finally conquered Isner’s most reliable asset.
After the first two sets were each decided by tiebreaker—with Federer the victor in both—Federer finally broke Isner’s formidable serve while up 6–5 in the third, sending the five-time U.S. Open champion to the quarterfinals with a 7–6(0), 7–6(6), 7–5 victory.
It was the first time Isner’s serve had been broken at the U.S. Open in two years.
Federer’s serve was also unshakable. He only allowed five break opportunities, and Isner failed to capitalize.
“You could sense if John really hit his spots and I would do the same, it would be tough for either one of us to break through,” Federer said.
With both players refusing to budge on serve, the match came down to two tiebreakers, both of which Federer won. In the first set, Federer gave Isner his first 7–0 tiebreaker defeat of his career, and in the second set tiebreaker Federer rallied from 3–5 down to win 8–6, hitting two sublime shots to clinch the set.
Federer finished the match with 55 winners and just 16 unforced errors.
“I really would have liked my chances against some other players out there,” Isner said. “But he was too good. That’s what I was up against. There’s nothing you can do about that.”
Isner’s defeat means no American remains among the eight players remaining in the draw.
With the win, Federer improved his record against the 6'10" American to 5–1. Federer will play No. 12 Richard Gasquet, who defeated No. 6 Tomas Berdych in four sets on Tuesday, in the quarterfinals.
Petra Kvitova advances to first U.S. Open quarterfinals: No. 5 Petra Kvitova, a two-time Wimbledon champion, reached her first-ever U.S. Open quarterfinals with a 7–5, 6–3 win over Johanna Konta. Konta was unable to take advantage of her break opportunities, finishing the match 0–5 on break points. Kvitova converted both of her break chances. Kvitova recorded 28 aces—compared to just 10 for Konta—in her victory, which placed her in a quarterfinal match against No. 26 Flavia Pennetta.
Richard Gasquet rallies to defeat Tomas Berdych: After sixth-seeded Tomas Berdych took the first set from Richard Gasquet 6–2, the Frenchman turned the match around and earned a 2–6, 6–3, 6–4, 6–1 victory. Gasquet has only made it to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Open once—in 2013, when he advanced to the semifinals. Gasquet is looking to reach his second consecutive Grand Slam semifinal after earning a place in the Wimbledon semis earlier this summer. Berdych has been knocked out in the fourth round of his last three Grand Slam events. Gasquet has just two wins in 16 matches against Roger Federer, his quarterfinals opponent.