Krajinovic Soars Into First Final Of The Season In London

Serbian had not earned a tour-level win on grass before this week

Filip Krajinovic earned the biggest win of his season on Saturday at the Cinch Championships, where he downed seventh seed Marin Cilic 6-3, 6-3 to reach his first ATP Tour final of the season.

The Serbian, who is making his debut in London, played with confidence as he took the match to Cilic in windy conditions. The 30-year-old hit with relentless depth on return, while he struck his groundstrokes with consistency to advance after 80 minutes.

"It is an unbelievable feeling," Krajinovic said in his on-court interview. "I can't believe I am in the final. Before this tournament I had never won a match on grass. [I thought] I would come here and win just one or maybe two matches, but now I am in the final. It is a dream come true. It is traditional and an honour to play here in front of you guys. It is a dream for me."

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Krajinovic had not won a tour-level match on grass before this week, but will now face 2021 titlist Matteo Berrettini in the championship match on Sunday. He holds a 0-4 record in tour-level finals, but can take confidence from his strong performances this week as he looks to capture his first win over the Italian.

"Let's see. I am just going and enjoy," Krajinovic said when looking ahead to the final. "I have nothing to lose, so let's see. I will enjoy and see what happens and of course give my best."

Krajinovic is now up to No. 31 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Rankings, having also defeated Jenson Brooksby, Sam Querrey and Ryan Peniston this week.

In a lively encounter, it was Krajinovic who looked dictate with his flat and penetrating groundstrokes. He pulled Cilic around the court and raised his level in the key moments, saving all six break points he faced to earn his third Top 20 win of the year.

Cilic has captured 35 wins at The Queen’s Club in his career, the most of any active player. However, the 2012 and 2018 winner, who was aiming to reach his fifth final at the ATP 500 grass-court, was unable to find his best level in his first ATP Head2Head meeting with Krajinovic.