Published: Mon, June 25, 2018
Sport | By Ashley Hunter

Queen’s 2018: Novak Djokovic heads to SFs and milestone win No800

Queen’s 2018: Novak Djokovic heads to SFs and milestone win No800

Serbia's Novak Djokovic has advanced to the semi-finals of the Queen's Club Championships with a routine 7-5, 6-1 victory over Frenchman Adrian Mannarino.

But the world number six survived that threat and then stormed back from 4-1 down to take the second set tie-break.

While he has not won a title for a year, a strong run in Rome, followed by a quarter-final showing at the French Open and now an impressive transition to grass, augurs well for his chances at next month's Wimbledon.

"I think Roger's motivational level is just slightly better and higher on Grand Slams, " said Cilic, "and you can see that throughout so many years that he's been showing the best tennis at Grand Slam levels".

The former No. 1 has had more downs than ups, but this week in Queen's in back in his first ATP finals since winning Eastbourne last June.

Meanwhile, top seed Cilic fought past the big serving Sam Querrey to win 7-6 (3), 6-2, booking a tantalising semi-final with the talented Nick Kyrgios.

Cilic served for the title and Djokovic, when once he might have roared back, put up barely token resistance, his final forehand sailing harmlessly long.

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"I felt that when I'm going to raise my level of the serving, I'm going to be the one who can even take control of the match, " Cilic said.

"I'm just very excited to be able to win in straight sets against very good players". I have plenty of time to make couple more wins. I feel that I'm playing great.

"I watched here and there some of his matches", Cilic said.

A rampant Djokovic conceded just one point on his first serve during the second set and looked favourite to close out the contest in the ninth game but Cilic responded with a booming serve out wide to save match point.

"No breaks for me until that last (return) game".

His serve-volley strategy provided dividends in the second set, although he needed another ace to save set point at 5-4, and after a typical outburst at his own team the Australian won it with yet another ace to set up a semifinal with Marin Cilic.

Sure enough a Kyrgios double-fault at the start of the tiebreak gave the initiative to Cilic who quickly built a 6-3 lead and although he netted on his first match point he converted the second when Kyrgios skewed a backhand wide.

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