At the end of day 8 at 2015 US open, the quarterfinal line-up was decided in most categories. After Rafael Nadal fell on day 5, the 2012 US Champion Andy Murray also exited the US open on September 7. However, top two men’s seeds Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer have reached the quarterfinals and they have been joined in the round-of-eight by Stan Wawrinka, defending champion Marin Cilic, Jo Wilfried Tsonga, Feliciano Lopez, Richard Gasquet and Kevin Anderson, who caused the biggest upset of the day. Anderson defeated no.3 seed Andy Murray in a 4-setter that extended beyond the 4-hour mark. Among women, both Williams sisters are through to the quarterfinals and they have set up a clash against each other on September 9. Others who reached the quarterfinals are; no.2 seed Simona Halep, Victoria Azarenka, Roberta Vinci, Kristina Mladenovic, Petra Kvitova and Flavia Pennetta. India’s Sania Mirza and Leander Paes have also entered the women’s and mixed doubles quarterfinals, playing with their common partner, Martina Hingis of Switzerland.
After the fabulous Fabio Fognini showed the door to Rafael Nadal three days ago, it was the turn of South Africa’s Kevin Anderson, who caused day eighth’s biggest upset by defeating Great Britain’s no.3 seed Andy Murray. It was the third consecutive time that Murray has failed to reach the quarterfinals at Flushing Meadows after his title victory in 2012. In the second round on the other day, Murray bounced back from a 2-set deficit to take the match from Frenchman Adrian Mannarino. On Monday, however, the Scot couldn’t get lucky enough. The 6ft 8in tall Anderson entered the duel with Murray having delivered 69 aces in his previous matches. The Scot knew pretty well that the serve was the South African’s greatest strength. But Murray is one of the best returners in the game and he has beaten Anderson earlier despite the big serve. But Monday was different. After Anderson took the first set on tiebreak, he raced to a 5-1 lead in the second before Murray could manage to find a break. However, the Scot couldn’t capitalize on the opportunity and Anderson broke him again to take the set and a 2-0 set lead. Murray played his best tennis in the third set and reduced the deficit to 2-1 by winning the set on tiebreak. The fourth set went to tiebreak as well but this time, Anderson completely dominated the tiebreak and held 6 match points at 6-0. He converted the first for the biggest win of his life. The South African came through 7-6, 6-3, 6-7, 7-6 in the longest match of this year’s US Open.
In other prominent men’s singles fourth round matches, Novak Djokovic was stretched to four sets by Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut. The world no.1 dropped the second set but prevailed 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 6-3 in a grueling base-line play that lasted a little over 3hours. The Serb will next take on another Spaniard Feliciano Lopez in his ninth consecutive US Open quarter-final. Like Djokovic, Federer also had a tough fourth-round customer in USA’s John Isner. The big serving American took the first two sets to tiebreaks but the Swiss Maestro won both. However, Federer was down 0-40 in the second set before forcing the tiebreak, where he had slipped to 2-4 before wearing down Isner. The five-time champion held his nerve in the third set to win at 7-6, 7-6, 7-5. Never since 1982, there have been four quarterfinalists over 30 years of age as the 34-year old Federer also has three 30-plus quarterfinalists in Feliciano Lopez, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Stan Wawrinka. For a place in the semifinal, Federer will take on Richard Gasquet, who upset Czech Republic’s Tomas Berdych 2-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-1.
In women’s draw, no.2 seed Simona Halep of Romania played for 2 hours 38 minutes against Germany’s Sabine Lisicki before pulling through to a 7-6, 5-7, 6-2 victory. It was the first time that Halep has reached the US Open quarterfinals. On Sunday, top seed Serena Williams had beaten compatriot Madison Keys to set up a quarterfinal clash with big sister Venus, who beat Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit. In other matches, Italy’s Flavia Pennetta defeated Australia’s Samantha Stosur and another Italian Roberta Vinci reached the quarterfinal with a walk-over on Eugenie Bouchard of Canada. Victoria Azarenka defeated USA’s Varvara Lepchenko, Frenchwoman Kristina Mladenovic beat Russia’s Ekaterina Makarova and Czech Petra Kvitova finished off Britain’s Johanna Konta.
In women’s doubles, top seeds India’s Sania Mirza and Switzerland’s Martina Hingis reached the quarterfinals and they will play against Taiwan’s Chan Hao-Ching/Chan Yung-Jan for a place in the semifinals. In mixed doubles third round, India’s Leander Paes/Martina Hingis had a walk-over on Simona Halep/Horia Tecau to reach the quarterfinals.
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