'Anderson slump can end any time'
The slump in form of Kevin Anderson, which has resulted in the world ranking of South Africa's top tennis player slipping from a career-high of 28th little more than six months ago to a current 38th, "could end any time".
This is the view of former South African Davis Cup player and Anderson's coach, Louis Vosloo, who said in an interview from Stockholm on Thursday that from a technical point of view Anderson was "hitting the ball as well as ever.
"That is what makes his recent results so frustrating," said Vosloo.
"But anyone can find themselves in the kind of rut which Kevin is experiencing, when everything appears to be going against you and [your] confidence suffers as a consequence."
After starting the year on a high note, reaching career-high third rounds in both the Australian and French grand slam events, coming within a whisker of beating the world's sixth-ranked Thomas Berdych in a five-set epic and winning his second ATP title at Delray Beach, Anderson's results have gone pear-shaped, just as it appeared he was on the verge of easing into the prized world top 20 ranking.
Big things were expected from the 6 foot 8 inch 26-year-old at Wimbledon, where his booming service would have been a potent weapon. Instead he was beaten in the first round.
This was followed by another grand slam first round loss in the United States Open and a poor record in the six prestige Masters tournaments, in which Anderson failed to progress beyond the second round.
"Kevin is now in much better form than during the recent USA hard court season," added Vosloo.
"It was such a pity he was unable to convert those match points against top American player John Isner in China earlier in the month.
"I believe that would have done his confidence so much good and it could have gotten him over the hump.
"I believe his current form is good enough for him to get over the hump and freewheel into next year. He just needs to believe it as well. The bottom line is his skills are almost at a level to be among the very top players on a day-to-day basis.
Vosloo explained Anderson was working hard at his game, and the results were around the corner.
"Kevin is actively working very hard to uplift his game to be at the same level as the best players. Once this happens, he will come to trust in his game and realise his full potential.
"Great things happen to people that stand up and believe they can make it during challenging times. It's time for Kevin to stand up in this challenging time.
"I believe he can and will."