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Down Goes Marin Cilic: Guido Pella Delivers Wimbledon’s Biggest Upset


Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Marin Cilic.

The Highlights

  • Marin Cilic entered Wimbledon as one of the biggest favorites to win at 7-1.
  • He was also a massive favorite (-3333) to win his second-round match against Guido Pella, a +1575 underdog. 
  • Cilic was up two sets to love vs. Pella entering Thursday (their match was suspended due to rain on Wednesday), but Pella stormed back to pull off the biggest upset of the tournament.

Marin Cilic was the third-biggest men’s favorite (after Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic) to win Wimbledon at 7-1. And heading into Thursday morning, Cilic’s chances of reaching another round looked strong. He was up two sets to love against Guido Pella after rain suspended their match on Wednesday.

Pella was able to snag a break at 4-3 in the third set before they called it quits for the day, but, still, with him trailing 3-6, 1-6, 4-3, the prospect of a comeback looked bleak for the Argentine — especially if you consider the fact that Cilic was priced at -3333 pre-match — making Pella a +1575 underdog (before going down two sets).

But, as fate would have it, an upset of colossal proportions was in the works.

After resuming the match, Pella swiftly held his serve and closed out the third set to force a fourth. But Cilic responded, albeit briefly, in the fourth set, breaking Pella for 3-1, before dropping his next two service games to go down a break at 3-4. The Croat would get it back on serve in the next game — breaking back for 4-all — and the set ultimately came down to a tiebreak.

The Argentine stood tall, outlasting Cilic in the fourth-set tiebreak to force a decisive fifth set. And, from there, the unthinkable now seemed likely.

Cilic had his chance in the fifth set — blowing 0-40 on Pella’s serve at 2-all, and failing to break — and once that window of opportunity closed, Cilic did not see another.

Pella went on to break Cilic’s serve to stay in the match at 5-6 to complete the tournament’s biggest upset and break the hearts of anyone with a Cilic future ticket.

It just goes to show you how far momentum can go in tennis. And, today, Cilic found himself on the wrong side. With the loss, Cilic — who made the final of Wimbledon last year — will drop out of the top five in the world.

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