Tennis

Marin Cilic wins US Open title

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Marin Cilic is the US Open champion after a straight sets victory over Kei Nishikori in the men's final on Monday night.

The big-hitting Croatian never looked in trouble en-route to a 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 victory over the number 10 seed, making it three straights wins over higher-ranked opponents to lift the trophy.

Incredible run

A straight sets win over Tomas Berdych in the quarter-final got even better in the last four, as Roger Federer was sent packing in similar fashion. And, the sweep was completed at Flushing Meadows with the near-perfect performance against Nishikori - the first Asian male to reach a Grand Slam final.

You'd have been forgiven for thinking that it was coach Goran Ivanisevic out on the court and not in the box during the contest, with a mixture of stunning aces and erratic faults punctuating the performance. 17 aces to three double faults shows which played the bigger part in the final outcome.

Nishikori, on the other hand, could only win 51% of points on his first serve, and faced 11 break points during the contest. Five of those were taken by Cilic, compared to one from nine for the man from Japan.

Crucial second set

That break came in the second set, when Nishikori was 5-2 down. But, after getting back into it, he was immediately broken again to lose any momentum he had and the set 6-3.

The third set was the longest, lasting 44 minutes, but after the second set it never seemed in doubt and Cilic served out in under two hours to take the acclaim of the crowd on Arthur Ashe stadium.

Unbeatable?

He may not be one of the household names but, playing as he has in the last three matches, it's difficult to see how anyone could stop the Croat in this sort of form at the ATP Tour finals in November.

Nishikori will also hope to qualify for that event, and can take heart from a career-best victory over Novak Djokovic in the semi-final as a sign that he is moving towards the elite level of the men's game.

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Topics:
Tennis
US Open Tennis

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