Be it Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer or Serena Williams, tennis players and their idiosyncrasies have often caught the eyes of fans. Marin Cilic has something up his sleeves too, it seems, as he was seen bouncing the ball 27 times before the service on Thursday though he eventually managed to miss it.
The master of quirk, Nadal, before each match positions his water bottles. During the contest, he drinks from them in a certain order. More popularly, Rafa places his hair behind each ear and fiddles with his shorts before every serve. The Spaniard also makes sure his opponent crosses the net before he does on a changeover.
Cilic tried something of his own on Thursday in his semi-final match against Kyle Edmund. It was the first service of the game in the Rod Laver Arena and Marin Cilic pulled off a strange record of his serve after bouncing the ball 27 times. The Croatian first bounced the ball 14 times with his racquet, looked at Edmund, and shifted the ball to his hands. It was followed by another 13 bounces from his hands with Edmund waiting patiently all this while. In the end, Cilic's serve ended up way beyond the service line.
However, the anomalous start did not unsettle his nerves as he eventually went on to beat Edmund 6-2, 7-6, 6-2 in a two hour 18 minutes duel to become the first Croatian to enter the Australian Open finals. Edmund was aiming to become the fourth British man to reach a Grand Slam final since tennis turned pro in 1968, but could only come close in the second set. The Briton though visually suffering from a hip problem through most of the game, labelled it as 'irrelevant' after the game.
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