Wildcard Thanasi Kokkinakis was absolutely thrilled after edging out Marin Cilic to reach the Adelaide 2 final. Kokkinakis, ranked at No. 145 in the world, beat Cilic in a thriller clash 6-2 3-6 7-6 (10). “I’m just gonna enjoy this tonight as much as I can, get mentally and physically ready for tomorrow,” Kokkinakis said, per the Adelaide International website.
“It’s gonna be a tough final. He (Rinderknech) has played great this week, beaten a lot of quality players. “But I’ve got to back myself, don’t I? I’ve had a great week. “It’s been almost five years (since I’ve been in an ATP final).
I’m just going to try and enjoy it. Back home, I couldn’t have asked for it anywhere else, honestly”.
Kokkinakis saved two match points to beat Cilic
After winning the second set, Cilic got off to a good start to the third set as he took an early 2-0 lead.
However, Kokkinakis refused to quit as he got the break back in the fourth game. The set eventually went into a decider, in which Kokkinakis took a 6-2 lead. Cilic saved four consecutive match points but then failed to convert any of his two match points.
Kokkinakis finally realized his seventh match point to set up a final against Arthur Rinderknech. “I felt the buzz. It was crazy. Best atmosphere I’ve played in in some time, maybe the best ever,” Kokkinakis said.
“I played a great breaker up until 6-2, and then I tightened up like nothing else. He got a match point, and I was like, I can either go into my shell, or I can die wondering. “I just tried to tee off on a backhand line, pulled it off, hit some big serves, and I don’t know, I was just playing on adrenalin. “You guys (the crowd) got me through”.