US Open

Klaasen reaches new milestone

2014-09-01 17:49
Eric Butorac and Raven Klaasen (AFP)

New York - South African Davis Cup doubles expert Raven Klaasen has reached his first US Open quarter-final following a tough three-set victory on Sunday.

Klaasen and American Eric Butorac defeated Spain's Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and Austrian Philipp Oswald by 4-6 6-3 6-4.

The 31-year-old Klaasen is currently ranked 23 in world doubles after a meteoric rise and his success at Flushing Meadows is likely to take him past his career-best 22nd position and into the world's top 20 when the ATP's rankings are released next week.

The continued rise to prominence of the Klaasen-Butorac combination, who only paired up together a year ago, follows on from their unexpected appearance in the Australian Open final during the opening grand slam event of the year.

Klaasen and Butorac found their third round game against the scratch combination of Garcia-Lopez and Oswald a lot more difficult than anticipated, dropping the opening set and only moving through to the quarterfinals with a single break of service in the final set.

Because of the unexpected defeat of third-seeded pair Daniel Nestor and Nenad Zimonjic, Klaasen and Butorac will now face another relatively unheralded pairing in Scott Lipsky and Rajeev Ram, with the inviting opportunity of going through to the semi-finals.

In all probability, this would mean a meeting with the world number one pairing of Mike and Bob Bryan in the semi-finals, but it is worth recalling Klaasen and Butorac's fairytale success story includes a victory over the formidable Americans in the Australian Open.

In contrast to Klaasen's continued achievements, top South African player Kevin Anderson was again frustrated in his quest to reach a grand slam singles quarter-final for the first time when he lost his third round game 6-3 3-6 6-3 6-4 to Croatian Marin Cilic.

In the process of being upstaged in the battle of fearsome servers, the 28 year-old, 6ft 8in Anderson also failed to reach the last 16 stage in a grand slam tournament for the first time this year, having made it into the fourth round at the Australian Open, the French Open and Wimbledon.

The last time a South African reached a grand slam singles quarter-final was in 2003 when Wayne Ferreira made it into the semi-finals of the Australian Open.

Read more on:    atp tour  |  us open  |  raven klaasen  |  tennis

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