Marin Cilic: “I'm very happy with this 10 days. Played very good tennis, maybe in some matches the best ever” - UBITENNIS
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Marin Cilic: “I'm very happy with this 10 days. Played very good tennis, maybe in some matches the best ever”

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TENNIS WIMBLEDON 2014 – 2nd of July. N. Djokovic d. M. Cilic 6-1, 3-6, 7-6, 6-2, 6-2. An interview with Marin Cilic

 

Q. Tough one today from the position you were in. Do you feel it was a missed opportunity?

MARIN CILIC: Yeah, I would say so. Even though, I mean, third set Novak had a lot of chances my serve a couple times 15-40. Eventually I made the break on 5-All, and then I hit the net on the first point at 6-5.

That changed the momentum around. Lost my service game. Then I eventually won that third set tiebreak.

I felt it sort of took out a bit more energy than it should have for that third set. Mentally, as well.

What was sad was the beginning of the fourth. I gave him the opportunity to come back in the match. He went to 3-Love, 4-Love lead in that fourth set.

From that moment I felt I need to, you know, come back in the game, but sort of I didn’t have any chances to do that unfortunately.

 

Q. Were you nervous at the start? You didn’t get going in the first set, did you? Why was that?

MARIN CILIC: Yeah, I just didn’t open it up good. I would say that my serve wasn’t working as well as in the first four matches. I mean, it’s a bigger occasion. Novak is returning better. I don’t know what decided for that.

But, yeah, Novak also played well in that first set. I just missed more first serves, and then the second serve I didn’t win many points. Later I got into that rhythm and I felt very comfortable after that second set.

Just I felt that against these players, I mean, these top guys, you give them a chance to come back they don’t let you come back anymore. So that was, I think, disappointing in the end.

But, yeah, we all have to be satisfied.

 

Q. He changed his shoes at the start of the fourth set and it seemed to make quite a big difference.

MARIN CILIC: I mean, when you play on the courts, the longer it goes, especially behind the baseline, that dry grass gets cut, and then on the top of the grass stays this part of the grass which then makes it slippery.

I slipped a couple times, but I don’t think that made a big difference.

 

Q. So it was a tough road, but you feel like you’re moving forward compared to last year?

MARIN CILIC: For sure. I’m very happy with this 10 days. Played very good tennis, maybe in some matches the best ever. So I’m very satisfied with that and very positive for next tournaments.

I had a good chance today. I mean, I played against one of the best in the world. It feels a pity always when you have some chances and you lose, but, yeah, it’s a big progress.

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Rafael Nadal Hoping Coronavirus Will Not Spoil His Olympic Dreams

The 19-time grand slam champion speaks out about the worldwide outbreak.

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World No.2 Rafael Nadal has said he is hopeful that a remedy can be found to contain the worldwide Coronavirus outbreak in order to stop what he describes as ‘fear’ erupting.

 

Several countries have declared major medical emergencies in order to tackle the illness, which also goes by the name of Covid 19. It is believed to have originated in China, where the most infections and deaths from the illness have been recorded. However, Iran is also struggling with an outbreak, Italy has quantified 11 towns, Saudi Arabia is preventing foreign pilgrims from entering their country and Japan has closed schools.

Coronavirus has also had an impact on various tennis events with a string of Chinese ITF and Challenger events cancelled. Meanwhile on Sunday, the final of the ATP Bergamo Open in Italy was cancelled due to concerns. Making it the first time an European event has been impacted by the threat posed by Coronavirus.

“I hope it is controlled, that a remedy is found and this uncertainty is stopped, this psychosis, this fear. It is the most important thing, not only for the Olympic Games, but for humanity, “ Nadal commented on the issue following his second round win at the Mexican Open.

One of the biggest sporting events is also under threat – the Olympic Games. This year’s edition will be held in Tokyo, Japan. IOC council member Dick Pound has recently said the sporting event will be cancelled if there is ‘world health at stake.’ The World Health Organisation is currently working with Olympic organizers, who are keen to empathise that they have no intention of cancelling the event.

“Our basic thoughts are that we will go ahead with the Olympic and Paralympic Games as scheduled,” Committee chief executive Toshiro Muto recently told Japanese reporters.
“For the time being, the situation of the coronavirus infection is, admittedly, difficult to predict, but we will take measures such that we’ll have a safe Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

Nadal is one of many tennis players hoping to win a gold medal later this year. The Spaniard is already a three-time Olympic after competing in 2004, 2008 and 2016. He has previously won two gold medals. Claiming the singles title in 2008 and the doubles trophy alongside Marc Lopez in 2016.

“Regarding the Olympic Games, to say that it is one of the most special events in the world. It is a unique experience to be there and I consider it the most difficult tournament to win because you only have two or three chances in your career, “ Nadal commented.

The Olympic tennis tournament will get underway on July 25th. It will be held at the Ariake Coliseum.

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Novak Djokovic reaches the semifinal in Dubai for the ninth time in his career

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Novak Djokovic cruised past Karen Khachanov 6-2 6-2 in one hour and six minutes to reach the semifinal at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Tournament for the ninth time in his career.

 

Djokovic dropped 13 points in eight service game and converted on five of his nine break points. He dropped his serve only once in the first set.

Djokovic held serve with a drop shot winner in the third game and broke serve at love with a forehand return down the line winner in the fourth game to take a 3-1 lead. The 2020 Australian Open champion held his serve with a drop shot winner in the third game and broke serve at love with a return down the line winner.

Djokovic held serve at love with a volley winner to consolidate the break. The Serbian player went up a double break earning his chance to serve for the set, as Khachanov netted a backhand in the sixth game. Khachanov pulled one break back after a forehand error from Djokovic, as the Serb failed to convert a set point in the next game. Djokovic got another break in the eighth game to clinch the opening set 6-2 on his third set point in 32 minutes, as Khachanov hit a backhand into the net.

Khachanov fended off a break point in the second game of the second set before Djokovic earned a break at love in the fourth game with a lob. Djokovic sealed the second set with another break at 5-2.

“I don’t know if I am playing the best tennis of my career. That’s a big statement, but I am feeling and playing well.  I like the conditions, but in windy conditions it’s not easy to serve and find rhythm. I know it wasn’t Karen’s day, but I think I played a very solid match. I am trying to be in the present and execute my game plan”, said Djokovic.

Djokovic set up a semifinal against Gael Monfils, who won the all-French clash against Richard Gasquet 6-3 6-3 after 73 minutes. Monfils broke serve twice in the fifth and ninth games to win the first set 6-3 and went up a 5-1 lead with two breaks. Gasquet pulled back one of the two breaks, as Monfils was serving for the match at 5-1. Monfils served out the win on his first match point.

Monfils is seeking his third title of the year after winning two consecutive tournaments in Montpellier and Rotterdam.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas reaches his second consecutive semifinal in Dubai

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Last year’s finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas came back from one set down to beat Jan-Lennard Struff 4-6 6-4 6-4 reaching the semifinals at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships for the second consecutive year.

 

Struff earned three set points at 5-4 in the opening set. Tsitsipas recovered to 30-40, as Struff hit two forehands into the net. The German player converted his third break point chance to win the first set 6-4 after 45 minutes.

Tsitsipas earned an early break in the first game of the second set, as Struff hit a forehand long at 15-40. Tsitsipas rallied from 15-40 down, when he was serving for the second set at 5-4, and converted his second set point with a forehand down the line winner.

Struff fended off four break points in the first game of the decisive set. Tsitsipas earned the decisive break in the ninth game to take a 5-4 and sealed the win on his first match point. Tsitsipas will face Daniel Evans, who beat Andrey Rublev 6-2 7-6 (11-9).

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