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ATP Tennis 360


September 8, 2009 9:39 PM

Classy Cilic outpowered Murray

The Croat won 75 62 62 and went through to the Us Open quarters



When Murray hit the last forehand long ending his misery, Marin Cilic realized probably to have completed his personal puzzle finding his missing piece and starting filling his standards. The Croat, indicated by many as a future and bright star, had failed in big appointments (also if recently he defeated Blake in a dramatic Davis Cup five-setter). But today he was simply perfect, enjoyable, powerful and precise. This was the best performance of his career, he gained the first Grand Slam quarterfinal and the crowd could rub their hands thinking to the clash between the two big-bombers of this decade: Marin Cilic and Juan Martin Del Potro.

The Scotster in the first set held break points during the sixth game, but he wasted them with a backhand return dropping well wide and long and a crosscourt forehand wide after a remarkabler defense from the Croat. An ace and a backhand into the net at 5-4 15-40 (with Cilic serving) was practically an anticipated swan song. Cilic held, broke to 5-6, thanks also to an untimely double fault, and sealed the first set after another error from the Scot.

From that point, till the end of the match, Cilic didn't look back, despite the not extraordinary 31% of first serves in the second set, dropping only four games between second and third set.

The key of the match, apart from the paltry thirteen winners registrered by the Scot, was his oltranzist defensivism, his flat attitude, his low energy. Cilic showed an enviable bio-mechanic of strokes while Murray remained passively behind the baseline almost waiting for the unavoidable. The Croat turned the knife in the wound exacerbating the lack of a kliller-stroke in the Scotster game. On this kind of surface to emerge you have to be Nadal or you have to attack, and to do that profitably you have to devolve upon an ultimate stroke. Murray doesn't belong to any of theese two catehory.

And now, if Nadal, despite his being abdominally strained, succeed in beating Gael Monfils, the Mallorcan could come back nr.2 in the world ranking.

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