Anderson gives South Africa massive boost
Johannesbug: Kevin Anderson clinching a US Open men's singles semi-finals showdown with Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta in New York has given South African tennis a massive boost.
Football, rugby and cricket dominate the sport scene in the republic, taking most of the sponsorship money and the media space.
After defeating American Sam Querrey in the quarter- finals at Flushing Meadows, Anderson made the main sport page of many dailies.
"It was a pleasant if unusual sight," Tennis South Africa (TSA) chief executive Richard Glover said in Johannesburg.
"South Africans are used to seeing the back pages dominated by the 'big three' of football, rugby and cricket so it was nice to have positive tennis publicity."
Glover hailed 31-year-old Florida-based Anderson for reaching the last four of a Grand Slam championship for the first time, saying that when it comes to publicity "nothing beats on-court success".
Johannesburg-born Anderson is the first South African to make the last four of a Grand Slam event since Wayne Ferreira at the 2003 Australian Open in Melbourne.
"My phone almost exploded after Kevin won his quarter- final," chuckled Glover, who joined the national tennis body last year.
"It rang non stop and, interestingly, it was non-tennis sport followers who were phoning to say how wonderful it was that Kevin had reached the semi-finals."
Grand Slam semi-finals are uncharted territory for Anderson, who reached the last eight in New York two years ago but has never advanced beyond the fourth round at Melbourne, Roland Garros or Wimbledon.
Like all South African sport bosses outside the "big three", Glover has the challenging task of wooing financial backers.
He seems to possess a midas touch, however, having signed five sponsors, including local property and telecommunications giants and a South Korean car manufacturer. South Africa have adopted a bottom-up approach to tennis, concentrating on development to try and unearth more Kevin Andersons, who has three ATP titles to his credit.