Flamboyant Canadian awaits Anderson at US Open

Kevin Anderson (Photo credit: BLD Communications)
Kevin Anderson (Photo credit: BLD Communications)

Cape Town - South African tennis star Kevin Anderson faces a tricky encounter against flamboyant Canadian stroke maker Denis Shapovalov in the US Open third round on Friday.

The 19-year-old Shapovalov is ranked 28th at the year's final Grand Slam but could pose the fifth-seeded Anderson a few problems.

Several pundits believe Shapovalov is the next big thing in tennis.

The former Wimbledon junior champion burst onto the professional tennis scene last year by upsetting world No 1 Rafael Nadal at a Masters1000 event in Canada, before a run to the US Open round of 16.

Shapovalov is a flashy player who often sends crowds into raptures with explosive shot making, with his trademark flying backhand - which is executed in mid-air - a sight to behold (WATCH in the tweet below).

However the young Canadian, who was born in Tel Aviv in Israel, can be erratic at the best of times and Anderson’s experience and consistency should make the tall South African the favourite heading into the pair's first ever match-up.

Anderson himself made headlines this time last year when he reached a maiden Grand Slam final before losing to Nadal.

He also stunned Roger Federer in this year’s Wimbledon quarter-finals, before going on to lose to Serbia's Novak Djokovic in the final.

At this year’s US Open, Anderson survived a gruelling five-setter in his opening match against America’s Ryan Harrison, before comfortably dispatching Frenchman Jeremy Chardy.

A victory over Shapovalov would see Anderson face either Austrian ninth seed Dominic Thiem or home hope Taylor Fritz in the round of 16.

After that, a possible rematch with Nadal could lie in wait in the quarter-finals...

Note: The Anderson v Shapovalov match is the third day match scheduled for Louis Armstrong Stadium on Friday. It is likely to start from 20:00 (SA time) onwards.

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