ANDY MURRAY crashed out in the fourth round of the US Open, making his earliest Grand Slam exit since 2010 to end his run of 18 consecutive major quarter-finals.
South African 15th seed Kevin Anderson stunned the British third seed 7-6 (7/5), 6-3, 6-7 (2/7), 7-6 (7/0) to reach his first Grand Slam quarter-final after seven prior fourth-round defeats.
"It was the match of my life,"
Anderson said on Monday.
"This is a great accomplishment for me."
Not since a third-round exit in the 2010 US Open had Murray been eliminated so early at a Grand Slam tournament.
"That's obviously something that is disappointing to lose because of that. That's many years' work that's gone into building that sort of consistency. To lose that is tough,"
said Murray, the 2012 champion.
"Also to lose a match like that, that was over four hours, tough after a couple of tough matches earlier in the tournament as well, it's a hard one to lose, for sure."
Anderson, 1-5 in prior matches against Murray, fired 25 aces in ending an 0-15 career hoodoo against top-10 opponents and his fourth-round hex to book a last-eight date with Swiss fifth seed Stan Wawrinka, the reigning French Open champion.
"I'm just so excited to be through,"
"Beating a guy like Andy, I really feel like I've taken a step forward. It's amazing. I feel like it's a great accomplishment."
Anderson is the first South African in New York's last 16 since Wayne Ferreira in 2002.
He took to Twitter to express his happiness:
He came in off a third career title at Winston-Salem.
With New York City FC and former England midfielder Frank Lampard watching from the player's box, Murray fell behind two sets and a break, roared back, but ultimately could not win the tension-packed encounter at Louis Armstrong Stadium.
"That court 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 had 49 winners and 20 unforced errors, but did not make a forehand winner until the last game of the second set. Anderson blasted 81 winners to 57 unforced errors.
Anderson ripped a forehand winner on the final point of the opening tie-break to take the set after 69 minutes, then broke Murray's first service game of the second set on the way to a 5-1 edge.
AB de Villiers, cricketer of the same country congratulated Anderson on Twitter:
The CTL (Champions Tennis League) family too wished Anderson on achieving this feat via Twitter: