Cyril Ramaphosa leads praise of Kevin Anderson's shock defeat of Roger Federer
President Cyril Ramaphosa on Thursday led South Africa in congratulating Kevin Anderson after he sensationally knocked Roger Federer out of Wimbledon to become the first South African to reach the semifinals in 35 years.
The 32-year old Anderson defeated defending champion Federer in a five-set thriller that lasted slightly more than four hours.
"Congratulations to Kevin Anderson for reaching the men's singles semi-finals," Ramaphosa tweeted on Thursday.
Anderson became the first South African in the Wimbledon semifinals since Kevin Curren in 1985 and just the sixth in history.
"We have always considered him an ambassador and he continues to wave the flag. We are very excited," Mickey Modisane, the sports ministry spokesman, told AFP.
"From a social cohesion and nation-building perspective, it's a great achievement for South Africa."
Congratulations to Kevin Anderson for reaching the men’s singles semi-finals and to Raven Klaasen for reaching the men’s doubles semi-finals at #Wimbledon. All the best to Kgothatso Montjane who’s going to become first SA black woman to play at Wimbledon. We are proud of you all. pic.twitter.com/hVW9CZKIiG— President Cyril Ramaphosa (@CyrilRamaphosa) July 12, 2018
"Over 3 hours these two men gave their all to stay alive. Fight, determination, hunger... you name it they showed it all," tweeted South African cricketer Morne Morkel, who was in the crowd of spectators at Wimbledon.
Eighth seed Anderson will play American ninth seed John Isner on Friday for a place in Sunday's final.