Djokovic routs Cilic to reach U.S. Open final

Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:09pm EDT
 
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By Steve Keating

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Top-seeded Serbian Novak Djokovic crushed defending U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic 6-0 6-1 6-2 on Friday to secure passage to his fourth consecutive grand slam final.

Djokovic, playing on the same court where women's world number one Serena Williams and Romanian second seed Simona Halep were surprisingly sent packing from the tournament earlier, needed just 85 minutes to end Cilic's title defense.

The beat down was the worst ever in a U.S. Open semi-final, the three games lost one fewer than the four Yevgeny Kafelnikov managed against Lleyton Hewitt in 2001.

With the rout, Djokovic ran his record to 14-0 against the ninth-seeded Croat and moved one win away from adding to his 2015 grand slam triumphs at the Australian Open and Wimbledon.

The Serbian world number one will face five-times U.S. Open winner Roger Federer, of Switzerland, in the final on Sunday.

"Expectations are always there from myself and from the people around me," said Djokovic, who has one U.S. Open victory on his resume and has now reached the final six times. "I came here with a wish and a mission, as well, to reach the finals and fight for the trophy.

"So I got myself in that position. It's already a great result. But I want to get that final step on Sunday and get my hands on that trophy."

Cilic entered the contest riding a 12 match win streak on the Flushing Meadows hardcourts but it became clear very early that he would have a difficult time extending it as Djokovic tore through the opening set in just 24 minutes.   Continued...

 
Novak Djokovic of Serbia returns volley to Marin Cilic of Croatia during their men's singles semi-final match at the U.S. Open Championships tennis tournament in New York, September 11, 2015. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton