Sunday, September 5, 2010

Former Illini Fall at US Open

It was a wild ride for former Illini Kevin Anderson that included an upset of the No. 26 player in the world, but it was all over on Saturday as he – literally – fell in the third round of the US Open men’s singles.

Richard Gasquet was responsible for one of the tournament’s biggest upsets as he took out No. 6 Nikolay Davydenko.  The former US Open Junior Boys champion (2002) is well recovered from a broken wrist and hitting serves and volleys that stated his intention of winning.  He broke early in the first set and held that one until he took it at 6-4.  The second set was quite different, with long games and traded breaks until both players held serve at 4-3 and brought that into a tiebreaker.

It was the breaker that would seal Kevin Anderson’s fate in this tournament.  With the score remaining on track for both players and the pressure on, Anderson would fall while attempting a return, twisting his back.  He would only take one more point as Gasquet claimed the set at 7/3.  Though a trainer visited the court, his movement was limited and only his power serve kept him in the match in the third set, which would belong to Richard Gasquet at 7-5.

After the match, Kevin Anderson, who was in the second round of play with partner Victor Hanescu, withdrew from the doubles event.  It would also be the end of doubles for frequent partners Rajeev Ram and Bobby Reynolds, a former player at Vanderbilt.  They put on a great display of serve and volley, but it wasn’t quite enough to get past 12th seeded Marcel Granollers and Tommy Robredo.

Rajeev Ram is still in Mixed Doubles with partner Aravane Rezai of France.   The duo will be playing   fourth-seeded Bethanie Mattek-Sands &  Daniel Nestor Sunday afternoon.   Also playing is Michigan’s  Evan King, in the US Open Junior Championships.
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