Anderson shines in team tennis
Johannesburg - While the depleted South African Davis Cup team were battling for survival in the World Group playoff against Canada in Montreal this weekend, top SA player Kevin Anderson was shining for the Sacremento Capitals in the Team Tennis Finals in Charleston, United States.
A gallant South Africa team, without the unavailable Anderson and the injured Rik de Voest, kept the last day's play in Montreal alive when Izak van der Merwe and Raven Klaasen upset the odds in the doubles by beating Daniel Nestor and Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 7-6(3), 7-6(5) in a tense, straight sets battle on Saturday, reducing Canada's lead to 2-1.
Meanwhile, Anderson was the most successful player for the Sacremento Capitals in a 25-15 win over the Orange County Breakers that earned his team a place in Sunday's final against the Washington Kastles.
World Team Tennis (WTT) is an American innovation that is only played in the US and arouses little interest elsewhere in the world.
It also has no bearing on official ITF and ATP world rankings and records.
The WTT format, in which teams represent different cities in the US, is played in an atmosphere containing much razzmatazz and relies heavily on former stars like John McEnroe and Martina Hingis and cameo appearances from current top players, who are all handsomely rewarded financially for their presence.
It utilises a points scoring system of its own making.
Anderson was the top scorer with 48 points for the Capitals against the Breakers.
In the final, Sacremento were set to come up against a Kastles team that won the event last year and includes Venus Williams, who beat the John McEnroe-led New York Sportimes 19-15 in the second semi-final.
Anderson's decision to make himself unavailable for the crucial tie against Canada, in which a place in next year's elite World Group of the competition was at stake, aroused a great deal of controversy in South Africa.
Anderson defended his Davis Cup withdrawal last week, stating on his blog that fear of injury and loss of income had contributed to his absence from the tie.