Roger Federer vs Marin Cilic (6-2, 6-7 [5-7], 6-3, 3-6, 6-1)
It wasn’t an easy victory in Melbourne, but King Rog managed to get the job done as he became the first man to win 20 Grand Slam singles titles.
Marin Cilic didn’t disappoint and delighted sports betting fans with a terrific display at Rod Laver Arena. He made life hard for Roger Federer and forced the Australian Open final to a decider, almost pulling off a live betting upset on the way.
Nonetheless, the Croatian star just didn’t have enough and faltered in the final set that paved the way for the Fed Express—unarguably the online gambling favourite throughout—to run away with the title.
It looked like the 36-year-old Fed was on his way to another comfortable win. He was never challenged in the tournament, and his superb performance continued as he claimed the first set against Cilic in just 24 minutes.
The real battle, however, started in the second, with the Croat finally finding his rhythm. The see-saw affair saw both players go toe to toe and exchange massive forehands before Cilic eventually won the tiebreak.
Despite Federer winning the third in clinical fashion, he failed to carry the momentum in the penultimate set. The Swiss Maestro went 2-0 up and appeared to be putting an end to the game, but he succumbed to Cilic’s strength and even conceded six straight points while serving.
It was a different story in the decider amid the electric intensity that embraced the court. As the pressure takes its toll on Cilic, Federer took advantage and let his emotions loose to surge to an unassailable 4-1 lead. He didn’t slow down and closed out the match in style.
Post-match statistics showed where Federer dominated. He had 24 aces—eight more than Cilic’s—and won 80 percent of his first serve points.
With the win, Federer joined the likes of Margaret Court, Serena Williams and Steffi Graf as the only players to win 20 or more singles slam titles. It’s also his sixth time lifting the trophy at Melbourne Park, becoming the oldest Australian Open winner since the 37-year-old Ken Rosewall in 1972.
“I’m so happy,” Federer said. “Winning is an absolute dream come true. The fairytale continues for us, for me. After the great year I had last year, it’s incredible.”
Click for more tennis betting options.