2018 finalist Cilic stuns fifth seed Rublev to reach Australian Open fourth round

It was Cilic's second win in six meetings with Rublev, who reached the quarter-finals of last year's Australian Open.

Published: 22nd January 2022 07:27 PM  |   Last Updated: 22nd January 2022 07:29 PM   |  A+A-

Croatia's Marin Cilic celebrates after defeating Australia's Bernard Tomic at the Australian Open in Melbourne, Australia on Jan. 14, 2019. (File Photo | AP)


MELBOURNE: Former finalist Marin Cilic ended fifth seed Andrey Rublev's Australian Open hopes with an upset four-set victory to reach the fourth round on Saturday.

The experienced Croatian, seeded 27, knocked out the Russian 7-5, 7-6 (7/3), 3-6, 6-3 in 2hr 36min on Margaret Court Arena to book a place in the last 16.

It will be 33-year-old Cilic's eighth time in the fourth round at the Australian Open, where he was a beaten finalist to Roger Federer in 2018 after overcoming Rafael Nadal in the quarters.

Cilic will face Canada's ninth seed Felix Auger-Aliassime for a place in the quarter-finals.

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"I've had a good start to the season, played two weeks of tennis in Adelaide, and I've had two good matches here before this one," Cilic said.

"The conditions in the evening were a bit cooler and allowed me to go more for my shots and I was really lining up a lot of them, especially the returns, it was really going well for me today.

"I'm feeling really excited, I'm playing amazing and just looking forward to the next match, which gets tougher and tougher with the opponents, but I will try to give it my best."   

It was a superb clean-hitting performance from Cilic, the 2014 US Open champion, and he left Rublev shaking his head with some of his 55 winners.

It was Cilic's second win in six meetings with Rublev, who reached the quarter-finals of last year's Australian Open.


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