Entering Wednesday, Marin Cilic was 51–0 after winning the first two sets at a Grand Slam. But Cilic’s unblemished run came to an end courtesy of Roger Federer, who beat Cilic in five sets in Wednesday’s Wimbledon quarterfinals.
Federer, the No. 3 seed, prevailed 6–7(4), 4–6, 6–3, 7–6(9), 6–3 over Cilic, who was aiming to reach his first Grand Slam semifinals since last year’s U.S. Open.
Federer, who turns 35 next month, is hoping to win his first Grand Slam title since 2012, when he won Wimbledon. He is the oldest man to reach the Wimbledon final since 39-year-old Ken Rosewall in 1974.
Federer struggled at times with Cilic’s big serve, with the Croatian smashing 23 aces. But Federer also served well, only dropping his serve once and recording 27 aces.
The world No. 3 saved three match points in the fourth set, holding on to win a tense fourth–set tiebreaker 11–9. Federer converted his fifth set point of the fourth set to push the match to a decider.
Federer will face No. 6 Milos Raonic, who beat American Sam Querrey earlier on Wednesday, in the semifinals.
Cilic previously beat Federer in the 2014 U.S. Open semifinals on the way to his first and only Grand Slam title.