Kevin Anderson has become the first South African player to reach the last 16 of a Grand Slam since Wayne Ferreira reached the semi-final in Melbourne in 2003.
It was a battle from the off, as both players used their serves well. However, it was Verdasco who won it, closing out the opening set 6-4.
The Spaniard found Anderson's serve a tough nut to crack in the second, failing to set up a single break point.
Anderson created four, but only needed to take one in evening the scoreline at one set all.
The 22nd seed regained the initiative and once again got his nose in front in the third set, capitalising on the few opportunities given to him two win 6-4.
It was then that Anderson found his second wind, and all of a sudden the momentum was at his back.
The South African began to spray winners all over the court, while also reestablishing his serve as a potent weapon.
After taking a gruelling 63-minute fourth set on a tie break, he sealed a 4-6 6-3 4-6 7-6(4) 6-2 victory in the deciding set.