Andy Murray has just recorded his third win over Rafael Nadal and in doing so reaches his first Australian Open semi final. This will be his third career grand slam final and as for his semi final opponent Marin Cilic this will be the Croat’s first grand slam semi final, in fact Cilic is the first ever player from Croatia to reach the semi final stage at the Melbourne event.
Marin Cilic is currently the world number 14 and is also seeded 14th for this event, born in the Bosnian village of Medjugorje when it is was still part of Yugoslavia, this 21 year old now flying the flag of Croatia turned pro the same year as Andy Murray.
His progress since turning pro in 2005 until the last 6 months had not been as stellar as is other young counterparts. World number 3 Novak Djokovic, world number 5 Juan Martin Del Potro and his opponent on Thursday world number 4 Andy Murray have all been mixing at the very top of the game for a few years now.
Cilic comes into the match on a 9 match winning streak having won the tournament in Chennai, India prior to the Australian Open, it was the Croats fouth ATP title after success in New haven in 2008 and Chennai and Zagreb in 2009.
Murray and Cilic have met 4 times with Murray holding a 3-1 advantage over Cilic, though crucially perhaps the latest match was a surprise straight sets victory 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 for Cilic in the 4th round of the US Open. The shock victory against Murray who was the 2nd favorite for the title and the previous year’s finalist was seen as a major major upset and heaped heavy criticism against Murray.
Since that win though, cilic has been showing signs that, that win at the US open could well have been the begining of his rise to the top of the game, he dispatched another top 10 player Andy Roddick in the quarter finals here and out matched US open champion Juan Martin Del Potro in the 4th round.
For Murray though the semi-final against Cilic will give the Scot the perfect chance to revenge that US open defeat and reach his second career grand slam final.
Murray is favorite with the bookmakers.
|Player||Andy Murray||Marin Cilic|
|Traditional Odds||Decimal Odds||Traditional Odds||Decimal Odds|