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Kevin Anderson: ‘One tennis player coming out might open the gates for others’

The world No 8 on his fierce campaigning streak, how he was shaped by apartheid – and tennis’s long road to equality

‘I try not to get too political,” Kevin Anderson says as he winds down at the end of a rainy day at the National Tennis Centre. “But coming from South Africa, where apartheid was a huge problem and there was lots of inequality, has shaped me in terms of how I view certain issues. You need people to speak up.”

Anderson, who will continue his comeback at Queen’s Club this week after missing the French Open with an elbow injury, comes alive when discussing matters away from the court. The world No 8 loves what he does for a living but it does not define him. Although Anderson has fond memories of his run at Wimbledon last year when he reached the final after beating Roger Federer from two sets down in the last eight and taking six hours and 36 minutes to overcome John Isner in the second-longest match in grand slam history, he knows there is a world outside tennis.

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