Kevin Anderson may have been knocked out of the US Open in New York last night…but at least the world, well CNN, now knows his name, and he has not left the tournament empty-handed. The South African tennis player has been awarded the US Open Sportsmanship Award.
The South African tennis player crashed out in a disappointing match against Stan Wawrinka last night. The French Open champion, who Kevin had knocked out of Queens in June, this time defeated Kevin in straight sets: 6-4, 6-4 and the soul-destroying 6-0.
Wawrinka will now meet fellow Swiss player Roger Federer in the semi-finals at Flushing Meadows.
After Kevin beat British player Andy Murray in a surprise upset to make it through to the Grand Slam Quarter Finals, a first in his career, CNN reported that an “unknown” South African had dashed Murray’s dreams.
[quote_center]”Sorry Kevin, a silly mistake by us.” – CNN Senior Sports Producer[/quote_center]
After a barrage of complaints from tennis fans, CNN corrected their story, but not before various media outlets had pointed out their error, including South Africa’s Sport24 which tweeted a picture of Kevin with the words “Dear CNN, Meet Kevin Anderson.”
CNN’s senior sports producer for its international digital team, John Sinnott, tweeted an apology directly to Kevin saying “Sorry Kevin, a silly mistake by us. We’ve put it right on the story…” Kevin tweeted back a “Thank you!”
The following Editor’s note now appears on the latest version of the CNN article: “In an earlier version of this story we referred to Kevin Anderson as ‘unknown,’ which given that he is the 15th seed at the U.S. Open and currently sits at number 14 in the world rankings is completely inaccurate. We’ve corrected our story accordingly and thank our users for pointing out our error.”
[quote_center]”Kevin consistently ranks among those who best embody respect and sportsmanship…” – USTA President[/quote_center]
In the meantime 29-year-old Kevin has been recognised by the US Tennis Association (USTA) – he has been awarded the US Open Sportsmanship Award, which includes a $5,000 donation to a charity of his choice.
USTA Chairman, CEO and President Katrina Adams said “Of all the players on tour, Kevin consistently ranks among those who best embody respect and sportsmanship, even in the heat of competition. He is a tremendous role model and is deserving of this year’s US Open Sportsmanship Award.”
Last year’s winner was Roger Federer.
In a post-match interview Kevin told the ATP World Tour that he will take a lot of positives from the US Open and that “I definitely know I can do better.”
He conceded that he was perhaps “a little bit nervous just with the occasion and a lot of waiting around” (due to rainfall which not only delayed play, but required switching courts.)
Of his new Sportsmanship Award, Kevin said it was “very unexpected. I’m very honoured…I always try my best to behave the best I can out there and especially for the many people coming to watch I’ll always be very appreciative of their efforts, especially the younger boys and girls who come here with high aspirations – I remember when I was in that position. To be recognised for that – I’ve always tried to do that throughout my whole career – it’s the first time I’ve officially been recognised for it so I guess it’s a nice little ending for me.”