Cilic: I was running like a Ninja!
Originally published on: 14/06/12 00:00
Marin Cilic is enjoying his return to grass at the AEGON Championships but the Croat says he approaches the surface with caution.
The 23-year-old Monte Carlo resident, who comfortably beat Matthew Ebden in his opening match at Queen's Club this year, was forced to retire ahead of last year’s quarter-final with Andy Murray after twisting an ankle in a fall in the previous round.
“After that I was running on eggshells, really slowly like a ninja,” joked Cilic, who admits that it takes him a couple of days to truly find his feet on grass.
“It takes two days [of training] until you adjust your rhythm and everything for you to get used to the bounce, but it takes a few matches for you to run freely on [grass] because if it happens that you fall down and you twist your ankle then you are in big trouble.”
Despite his slip last year, the world No.25 remains a very competent player on the surface. He reached the last eight on his first visit to Queen’s in 2007, beating Tim Henman and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga en route, and bypassed Arnaud Clement and Thomaz Bellucci to make the same stage in 2011.
“I always enjoy playing on the grass,” Cilic added. “It’s a little bit different than all the other surfaces and I feel that I can do really good on it. It’s just a matter of having a few matches before it to adjust the way you run on the grass. That’s the biggest difficulty.”