Murray served out by S. African ace
ANDY Murray fell out of the US Open under a barrage of aces and service winners off the racquet of towering South African Kevin Anderson, in a match that ended two Grand Slam streaks.
Anderson reached his first Grand-Slam quarter-finals with a 7-6(5), 6-3, 6-7(2), 7-6(0) victory at Louis Armstrong Stadium after a string of seven losses in fourth-round matches at Grand Slams.
Murray's loss on Monday snapped the Briton's run of having reached 18 consecutive grand slam quarter-finals. "That's obviously something that is disappointing to lose," said the third-seeded Scot, who smashed his racquet in frustration after losing the second set.
"That's many years' work that's gone into building that sort of consistency. Also to lose a match like that, that was over four hours, tough obviously after a couple of tough matches earlier in the tournament, as well. It's a hard one to lose."
The defeat came at Louis Armstrong Stadium, the US National Tennis Centre's second court.
"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," said Murray. "But when you're playing against someone that 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 lamented some lost chances against the 2.03m tall South African, seeded 15th. "When you're playing against players that are at that level, you need to make them think and then give them a chance to get nervous," he said about how the match might have gone differently had he cashed in a couple of break points.
"I felt like I had my opportunities there but didn't manage to capitalise on them." Murray, who has struggled with a head cold in the past week and battled back to victory in the second round from two sets down, did not blame fatigue.
"I was able to fight as I wanted to through to the end of the match. So I don't think the amount of tennis I played played a part. It was more playing against Kevin on the court of that speed, and with him serving as well as he does, it's a tricky match. It comes down to a few points in each set. He managed to get them today."
Second seed Roger Federer also came face-to-face with one of the ATP Tour's biggest hitters and coolly defused 2.08m John Isner's booming serve to claim a 7-6(0), 7-6(6), 7-5 victory.
Federer held his own from the service line to thwart Isner, never losing his serve and used his returning skills to derail a pair of long streaks enjoyed by the American.
The 34-year-old Federer closed out the 2h 39min fourth-round match by breaking Isner's serve, ending the American's string of 108 consecutive service holds at the US Open.
His perfect scoreline in the opening set tiebreak snapped an even longer Isner streak.
In 429 tiebreakers played by Isner, he had never dropped one 7-0. "Seven-love obviously is a pretty good score against John," said Federer.