Free Press Journal

Wimbledon 2017: Marin Cilic stands between Roger Federer and history


It’s the same old story at Wimbledon again. Switzerland’s favourite son and fifth ranked Roger Federer is again in the finals of the Wimbledon. Federer defeated Czech player Tomas Berdych 7-6(4) 7-6(4) 6-4 and now has reached his 11th Wimbledon finals. Federer’s opponent Marin Cilic of Croatia won against American Sam Querrey 6-7 (6), 6-4, 7-6 (3), 7-5 Friday on Centre Court. Cilic will now face master of grass court, Roger Federer.

Can Cilic stop Federer’s dream run at Wimbledon? Federer has not dropped a single set in the tournament and has played effortless tennis. The Swiss legend already has seven Wimbledon titles (record he shares with Pete Sampras) and will become the first man to win eight Wimbledon titles, if he wins his match on Sunday. Ken Rosewall, was 39 years old, when he reached the finals in 1974 and now Federer at the age of 35 is the oldest to reach Wimbledon final in recent years.

This year’s Wimbledon has seen likes of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray bowing out before the main event and Federer despite getting on with the age has shown no signs of slowing down. Fedex earlier this year defeated his fiercest rival Rafael Nadal in Australian Open to win his 18th grand slam and then opted out of the French Open. Federer’s game is based on basics and he keeps things simple.

Even when Federer was going through a rough patch, he never backed down from any challenge and always believed in processes and stayed true to himself. The Swiss maestro has now reached 29 grand slam finals (yeah! You have read it right) and whenever the stakes are high Federer brings his A game and systematically dissects his opponent and like a surgeon finishes his job very smoothly.

Chance for Cilic?

The big Croatian Marin Cilic is ranked sixth and has always shown promise and potential, but has only one Grand Slam in his kitty (2014 US Open). The last time anyone outside of the fab four (Federer, Nadal, Djokovic, Murray) won the title was way back in 2002, when Australian Lleyton Hewitt won the Wimbledon. The advantage for Cilic is this that he is not carrying any baggage and right throughout the tournament he has played attacking brand of tennis. It would be a big ask for the Croatian to beat Federer in his own territory, but Cilic would not be feeling undue pressure over the big match.

The game of tennis needs a new champion and a face, apart from the famous quartet and this final will be a huge spectacle if Cilic can beat all the odds and defeat Federer at his own game. Federer would go into the match feeling confident and going by the recent form, Federer starts as overwhelming favourite against the inexperienced Cilic (in terms of grand slams) and it would not be a surprise if Federer wins his 19th major title and leaves a legacy, which would be very hard to follow.