In an interview Marin Cilic recalled his 2017 Wimbledon final straight-set loss to Roger Federer. The Croat was feeling painful on his foot at the time. "I was disappointed for some days because I did not give myself the best chance.
It was mentally tough. I knew I had showed a good tennis on grass but not in the final against Roger. But he had an unbelievable run back then", said Cilic, who got past Yuichi Sugita in the Tokyo first round and he will face Hyeon Chung next.
"I really, really like Yuichi. We've known each other since 2005. We played juniors together. He's been coming to [former Cilic coach] Bob Brett's academy for so many years, where I practised for more than nine years.
We practised so many times, had so many practice sessions together. He's an amazing guy in terms of he's extremely humble, hard-working, too." Yoshihito Nishioka defeated Joao Sousa 7-5 6-3. The Japanese said: “This is my first win in this event, so I’m very happy for this.
Not many big tournaments have [a crowd like] here. This is the biggest tournament in Japan, so I’m very happy to play good tennis for many fans. I feel very good. The many people helped me, they gave me the power. That’s a very big reason for me playing my best tennis today.
I had a little bit of pressure on me, but many people cheered for me, so I think the home crowd was very special for a moment like this”.