Cape Town - Kevin Anderson was elated of reaching the quarter-finals of the US Open for the second time in his career.
The South African No 1 defeated Italy’s Paolo Lorenzi 6-4, 6-3, 6-7 (4/7), 6-4 on Sunday to reach the last eight at Flushing Meadows for the second time.
Anderson dispelled the demons of a 1-9 career record in Grand Slam fourth rounds to match his career-best major result, a 2015 quarter-final appearance in New York. In that run, he beat Briton Andy Murray in Round 4, before losing to Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka.
The 28th seed also improved his lifetime record against Lorenzi to 4-0.
"It feels great," said Anderson told the ATP World Tour’s official website after his win on Sunday. "Obviously I think getting here in this position a couple years ago, it was a very valuable experience in today's match. Obviously at this stage of tournaments, it means a lot. I think just being at that stage previously made me settle a little bit.”
Anderson’s run to the quarter-finals at Flushing Meadows two years ago had catapulted his ranking to a career-high of No 10, before the injury curse struck - so much so that his ranking dipped to a lowly 80th in January this year.
However, in recent months he has improved markedly and is now playing injury free.
"As the match went on, it was such a close match, towards the end all my focus was just getting through the match. I didn't really even think of the stage of the tournament. Obviously it feels great right now, matching my best result here. I feel like I'm playing really good tennis. My body's healthy. It was a pretty tough loss at the beginning of this year with a few injuries,” he continued.
"Right now, since actually the whole year, obviously there are a few aches and pains, but every tennis player has that. I'm glad to accept that... there's a few matches to go. I'm pretty excited about that."
In his next match, Anderson will face American 17th seed Sam Querrey, who sailed into the quarter-finals with a 6-2, 6-2, 6-1 defeat of German 23rd seed Mischa Zverev.
Querrey holds an 8-6 head-to-head win-record against Anderson, but the South African will be buoyed by winning their last encounter in Montreal last month.
Querrey won their last encounter in a Grand Slam when he defeated Anderson in five sets in the Wimbledon round of 16 earlier this year.