15 years since lifting his maiden Grand Slam trophy at the hallowed grounds of Wimbledon, Roger Federer took his Grand Slam tally count to 20. The next best on that list his friend and rival Rafael Nadal has 16. Infact the duo have won the last 5 Grand Slams amongst themselves.
Roger Federer defends his Australian Open title
Like last year this year’s final too went to 5 sets. Like last year this year’s championship point too was confirmed by hawk-eye and like last year this year’s Champion is Roger Federer. Such has been the utter dominance shown by Federer since the beginning of 2017 that is reminiscent of his golden years from 2005-2007. He won Wimbledon in 2017 without dropping a set and this year too reached the Australian Open final without conceding a single set against his opponents.
“During the match I constantly thought about the fact that I could reach 20,” Federer told the Swiss TV station SRF. “I was nervous the whole day, I thought about what would happen if I lose, if I win. That’s why I broke down during the speech.”
Australian Open Final 2018: As it happened
The opening set of the Australian Open final was a blink and you’ll miss stuff from Roger Federer as the Swiss maestro ran away with the first set 6-2. It looked like Wimbledon Final 2017 all over again as Cilic seemed a different player than the one who took out Rafael Nadal. But somehow, Cilic hung around in the second set and took it to a tie break where he was rewarded for his perseverance.
Federer appeared to have regained control when a deep return drew an error as he broke for 4-2 in the third, and a super half-volley pick-up mesmerized the audience. With a point for a double-break early in the fourth, it appeared all but over for Cilic, the Croat somehow turned the tide to reel of 5 games in a row and force the match to a decider.
Cilic, the former US Open champion could have had an opportunity to add an Australian Open trophy in his cabinet had he converted the break point on Federer’s serve in the opening game of the 5th set, but the Swiss was not to be denied. He cruised through the final set to win the mach 6-2 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 3-6 6-1.