Roger Federer blew a two-set lead and was sent packing from 2018 Wimbledon by Kevin Anderson on Wednesday. "I don't think it's fair but it is what it is". "I kept saying that today was going to be my day, because you really need that mindset taking the court against somebody like Roger", Anderson said. Beating Roger here at Wimbledon is something I'm going to remember.
The 32-year-old is playing in the last eight at the All England Club for the first time since finishing runner-up to Djokovic in 2011. When Nishikori let his own racket fly in the fourth set, he wasn't chastised, which prompted Djokovic to yell "double standards" toward Ramos - drawing boos from fans. "I have been building over the last couple of weeks, and the level of tennis I have played in the last couple of months felt like it was getting better and better and I feel like I am peaking at the right moment".
That took great self-belief, he added, knowing that he had never taken a set off 20-time major victor Federer in four previous meetings. "I'm feeling the ball well", the Swiss said. Still the focus was on the big three in the men's draw - Federer, Novak Djokovic and Rafa Nadal - but Anderson believed he could surprise many with victory, constantly talking to himself throughout the game. I never played that way.
The defending champion had not dropped a service game at this year's championships either - part of a run spanning 85 games - until Anderson broke him in the second set.
Anderson, the first South African to reach the last eight since Wayne Ferreira in 1994, was steadfast though and did what no man had done at Wimbledon since last year's semi-final when he broke Federer's serve early in the second set.
Anderson stayed cool and sealed victory on his first match point with a powerful first serve which Federer could only return into the tramlines. I gave it my all.
"Honestly, I'm not sure", the 20-times Grand Slam champion said when asked where it had all gone wrong.
But after failing to convert a match point in the third set, Federer allowed a rash of errors to creep into his game, particularly on the forehand side.
As it stands, the 17-time Grand Slam champion is now on 8,950 points while Federer, who has to win a ninth Wimbledon title to retain the full 2,000 points, is now on 8,720. Some of that was because the South African continued to attack at every opportunity.
"Down two sets to love I just tried my best to keep fighting and scraped through the third and fourth set", Anderson said. At 33 years old, he'd taken just one of the previous 18 Slams and the chorus of questions about whether he'd ever win another seemed to be reaching its crescendo.
'I've played this year so far only once in first four matches on Centre Court.
"It feels great to be back in the last four of a Slam. I feel like once I did that, I really settled down well and felt pretty comfortable out there".
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