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29 Enero 2018, 08:44 | Cornelio Vivanco
Cilic lost Australian Open final in five-set to Federer
Cilic recovered from two sets to one and a break down to force a fifth set but Federer proved stronger in the end to win 6-2 6-7 (5/7) 6-3 3-6 6-1 and join Novak Djokovic and Roy Emerson in claiming his sixth title in Melbourne.
"To reach (grand slam) No.20, No.6 here, it's just a lot trying to take it in", he said. Federer seemed upset over not being able to close out the match in the fourth, but dug deep to fight for the fifth.
Fans thought they had spotted a tell-tale sign that Federer was retiring as he didn't say on court that he'd see the fans the next year. "I was just playing phenomenal", said the Croatian.
Cilic's serve came under immediate pressure with a whipping backhand return winner for break point which the Croatian followed with a smash into the net for a break in the opening game. When asked about the heat, he delivered perhaps the quote of the tournament: "It's a professional sport". The 2hr 22min it took Halep to beat Angelique Kerber in the semi-finals was two minutes less than her third set against Davis.
"It's super special, one of the great moments in my career, and maybe this one is going to take longer to sink in". Mostly Federer's. Nadal wasn't going to catch him in major titles because no one ever will.
With the Swiss holding so easily, it was imperative that Cilic keep pace, but he looked to be in trouble facing a break point, but a big serve got him out of trouble, leading to a hold for a 3-2 lead. His only defeat was in the semifinals of the U.S. Open in 2014, where Cilic claimed his first major title. A wide kicker to the ad side was too good for Cilic and the championship was Federer's. Federer has six Australian Open titles. And the tennis legend knows that the adulation and time on the greatest stages in the sport won't last forever. His overall Grand Slam mark stands at 332-52. Every minute of the day. "Of course, winning is an absolute dream come true - the fairytale continues for us, for me, after the great year I had last year, its' incredible". I couldn't fall asleep until about three in the morning.
"Then I don't think age is an issue, per se". It is just a feeling you get. But you know what I mean. I wish you all the best.
With Federer dissolving into floods of tears after becoming the first man to win 20 Grand Slam titles, there was laughter in the Rod Laver Arena as the big screen switched to the image of the man after whom the venue was named.
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