Excellent Evans knocks out World no7 Cilic to progress in Australia Open - The Solihull Observer

Excellent Evans knocks out World no7 Cilic to progress in Australia Open

TENNIS: DAN Evans has labelled Wednesday’s magnificent victory over world number Marin Cilic at the Australian as the biggest win of his career.

The 26-year-old, from Solihull, came from behind to beat 2014 US Open Champion Cilic and book his place in the third round of the competition, a feat he has achieved at a grand slam on only four previous occasions.

It also now means that for the first time in his career Evans places himself inside the top in the world.

“It was definitely the biggest win of my career,” Evans told the BBC. “Five sets is the ultimate test. It was really good.

“I think I played as well as I can play. I knew I could win, but there’s no point sort of sprouting off beforehand that I could win. He was giving me a good hiding at the start. I just hung in there.”

It looked as though Evans may have been on his way out of the tournament after losing the first set 3-6 as he struggled with an eye injury early in the match.

But the Brit fought back and grew in confidence as the match went on, taking the second set 7-5 to level the score.

Errors were creeping in for Cilic and although the final two sets proved to be a real tussle, it was Evans who won them both 6-3 to record only his second win over a player ranked inside the world’s top ten.

“To come through on the last match point was pretty pleasing for me,” he added.

“I struggled early with the shade on the court and his ball was coming through pretty quick (Cilic hit 14 aces).

“I try not to think about the finishing line too far into the match because you get ahead of yourself. You’re thinking about it, then you’re not thinking about it. Love‑30 at the end was a big point, and I really started to think I was going to break him and win the match.

“Once the sun went down I got into it. It was great (to have the crowd’s support). The Aussie boys told me it was going to be pretty noisy. I’m looking forward to Friday.”

Evans is next in action this Friday when he plays Australian Bernard Tomic, who is ranked number 27 in the world.

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