The Andy Murray – Milos Raonic rematch in the Cincinnati Masters semifinals fell flat as the Brit rolled to an easy 6-3, 6-3 win. The win puts Murray into his third Cincinnati final after titles in 2008 and 2011 and ups his career-best win streak to 22.
“I didn’t get broken the last couple of matches and when I was in difficult situations I made good choices,” Murray said. “That’s helped keep the matches shorter. If you’re a bit lower on confidence, regardless of how fresh you are, if you haven’t played loads of matches you make bad decisions in those moments.
“And because I’ve won a lot the last few months, that’s something that has been good, especially this week for sure. I’ve needed it to be because I haven’t been feeling perfect. I’ve managed to get through the matches pretty well.”
Murray never lost serve and saved all three break point he faced. Murray advanced to his 7th straight final and 19th at the Masters 1000 level.
Raonic falls to 3-8 against Murray having now lost seven straight including five this year. And after getting close at the Australian, and on the brink at Queen’s, Murray’s blown him out in two meetings this summer in the Wimbledon final and now today.
“I think it’s going to come down to certain things,” said Raonic. “I got to obviously serve much better than I did today. Today I also did a better job of creating opportunities on his serve that I didn’t make count. I had three break chances and three second serves; I put the ball in twice. No, I put the ball in once on second serves.
“That is not a formula of success by any means. It’s going to come down to a few important points, playing them better, and obviously executing better than I did on my end of things when it comes to my service games than I did today.”
And not soon after the match concluded, heavy rains hit the tournament delaying the completion of the Marin Cilic-Grigor Dimitrov match by two hours moments after it had started.
In the final, Murray will meet Marin Cilic who knocked off Grigor Dimitrov 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 in match that ended past 1:30am. Dimitrov led Cilic 4-2 in the third set but lost 8 of the last 9 points and five of the last 6 games to lose the match.
“It was definitely a tough match in grueling, heavy conditions,” said Cilic. “We obviously waited a long time, starting at 11:28pm. Mentally it was not easy. I was not playing too well today. I didn’t find the rhythm on my serve and I was just trying to stay in there in the third set and manage physically.”
Playing in his 71st career Masters event. it’s Cilic’s first final and he’s just 2-11 against Murray.
“It’s a big win for me, first time in a Masters 1000 final,” said Cilic. “I’m looking forward to it. I’m feeling good on the court. I played great this week. I’m excited to be in the final playing against Andy. He is in great form, playing great tennis. I hope tomorrow I’ll play a good match and I know I’ll have a good chance if I play well.”
Murray will bid for his 13th career Masters title and overall the 40th of his career, fifth of 2016.
On this current streak, Murray has won titles at Queen’s, Wimbledon and the Rio gold medal. His last loss was to Novak Djokovic in the French Open final.
Despite the late start and finish to the second semifinal, the men’s final is still scheduled for 4pm ET.
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