Kevin Anderson, at 6-foot-8, by no means has had an issue garnering discover on the tennis court docket.
On the age of 32, nonetheless, the South African lastly is getting the eye that comes with reaching his personal-best profession rating on the ATP Tour.
Anderson, who superior to the Rogers Cup semifinals with a 6-2, 6-2 victory in opposition to Grigor Dimitrov on Friday, is ranked sixth on the earth after reaching No. 5 in mid-July when he misplaced within the ultimate at Wimbledon.
“I simply know the way it feels proper now, and it’s undoubtedly a protracted strategy to get right here,” Anderson mentioned. “I’m extremely motivated to maintain working exhausting, hold pushing myself.
“I do know that there’s a lot of objectives I set for myself that I haven’t achieved but. It has been that motivation that has stored me going and why I’m sitting right here at 32, and nonetheless really feel like I’m taking part in a few of my finest tennis.”
Anderson’s head-to-head historical past with Dimitrov is rife with losses, as he had crushed the Bulgarian, ranked No. 5 on the eve of the Rogers Cup, simply as soon as in seven conferences. Previous to Friday on centre court docket on the Aviva Centre, that lone victory had six years to gather mud, as Anderson beat Dimitrov solely in 2012, on the SAP Open in San Jose.
On Friday, Anderson received 81% of his first-serve factors and had 12 aces, and didn’t face a break level within the match.
“There’s not a lot you are able to do (about Anderson’s serve),” Dimitrov mentioned. “You may attempt to guess which spot he’s going to serve, however I believe the court docket fits him lots. It’s a really excessive bounce.
“I attempted all the pieces. I attempted to remain again, tried to chip, tried all of the issues I may presumably consider, however it simply wasn’t sufficient.”
In a single semi on Saturday, Anderson will face Stefanos Tsitsipas, who outlasted Alexander Zverev 3-6, 7-6 (11), 6-Four within the second quarterfinal of the day. The defending Rogers Cup champion, Zverev turned the third top-10 participant eradicated within the event by the 19-year-old Tsitsipas, who additionally ousted ninth-seed Novak Djokovic within the third spherical and the seventh seed Dominic Thiem within the second spherical. Zverev was seeded second within the event; Tsitsipas, who turns 20 on Sunday, was ranked No. 27 on the earth when the event began.
As Anderson was holding his information convention, the Tsitsipas/Zverev match was being proven on a close-by tv. Anderson glanced over and referred to the youthful rivals as “two of the game’s brightest stars.”
Anderson and Tsitsipas have met as soon as, and the Greek nationwide beat Anderson on the clay on the Estoril Open in Portugal in Could.
That loss is unlikely to trouble Anderson, whose spectacular 2018 season continues.
It’s the sixth time this season Anderson has reached the semis; he achieved the top on the New York Open, which he received in February. In three of his previous 4 Rogers Cup appearances, Anderson made it to the quarters, however by no means superior.
The profession surge for Anderson, who makes his house in Gulf Stream, Fla., comes after he battled by accidents through the 2016 season. Work off-court has helped his return sport.
“I don’t suppose there was one flick of a swap,” Anderson mentioned. “It actually seems like there was systematic enhancements in many various areas.
“Staying wholesome, clearly, is basically necessary. As I’ve gone alongside, I’ve been in a position to belief myself increasingly more. Among the outcomes I’ve had undoubtedly makes that course of lots simpler.
“It’s robust to form of level it out. It wasn’t one second the place all of it got here collectively. I really feel like there was a whole lot of little moments alongside the best way. I can level to among the greater ones, making two Grand Slam finals now (Anderson reached the ultimate of the usOpen final yr earlier than doing the identical at Wimbledon this yr).
“It has been a little bit of a case of making an attempt to make that breakthrough. I’ve gained extra perception and belief in my sport.”