Thu, 19 May 2022

Marin Cilic knocks out Andrey Rublev at Australian Open

Field Level Media
23 Jan 2022, 01:55 GMT+10

Croatia's Marin Cilic upset fifth-seeded Russian Andrey Rublev 7-5, 7-6 (3), 3-6, 6-3 on Saturday to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open in Melbourne.

Cilic, seeded 27th, needed two hours and 37 minutes to earn his second win since 2018 against a Top 10 opponent. The 33-year-old reached the fourth round for the eighth time in Australia by firing 24 aces and winning 85 percent of his first-serve points.

"It's incredible," Cilic said during his on-court interview. "I enjoyed every single second of the match. Andrey is an incredible player. We have played several times in the past and it is always difficult. I had so much fun and played great tennis."

Cilic finished with 55 winners and 41 unforced errors and broke Rublev's serve four times. Rublev, the highest seed to fall so far in the men's bracket, had 38 winners and 31 unforced errors.

Cilic, the 2014 U.S. Open champ, is one of three Grand Slam winners left in the field, along with No. 2 seed Daniil Medvedev and No. 6 Rafael Nadal. Cilic's next opponent is No. 9 seed Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada, a 6-4, 6-1, 6-1 winner against No. 24 Daniel Evans of Great Britain.

"I served great and that is the way to go against the guys at the top," Cilic said. "If you are giving them a chance to hit, you will have trouble, so I was trying to be aggressive and it paid off."

Medvedev rolled into the final 16 with a 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 defeat of Botic van de Zandschulp of the Netherlands.

"I am really happy because every round at a Grand Slam is very tough," Medvedev said. "Hopefully I can play here many more years."

Medvedev will face American Maxime Cressy, who eliminated Aussie wild card Christopher O'Connell 6-2, 6-7 (6), 6-3, 6-2.

No. 4 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece beat Frenchman Benoit Paire 6-3, 7-5, 6-7 (2), 6-4. His next opponent will be No. 20 Taylor Fritz of the U.S., who outlasted No. 15 Robert Bautista Agut of Spain 6-0, 3-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Also reaching the fourth round was home favorite Alex de Minaur. The No. 32 seed ousted Spain's Pablo Andujar-Alba 6-4, 6-4, 6-2. Up next for the Australian is No. 11 seed Jannik Sinner of Italy, who defeated Japan's Taro Daniel 6-4, 1-6, 6-3, 6-1.

--Field Level Media

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