Roger Federer moved one step closer to becoming the most decorated champion in Wimbledon history on Friday, disposing of Tomas Berdych in straight sets to advance to Sunday’s final.
Standing in the 35-year-old’s way of a 19th Grand Slam and eighth Wimbledon title will be Marin Cilic, who took out American Sam Querrey in a tight battle–6-7, 6-4, 7-6, 7-5–earlier in the day. It will mark the Croatian’s second Grand Slam final appearance after winning the US Open in 2014.
Here’s a complete look at everything you need to know about the men’s final:
Date: Sunday, July 16, 2017
Start Time: TBD
TV Channel, UK: BBC One
TV Channel, United States: ESPN. Live stream information can be found here
TV Channel, Worldwide: You can click here for a list of international broadcasters
Federer leads the head-to-head against Cilic, 6-1, but as last year’s instant classic at the quarterfinals on Centre Court proved, the gap between these two may not be nearly as wide as that number suggests.
In that one, which has been called the greatest match of 2016, Cilic jumped ahead two sets to love only for Federer to claw his way back for an extraordinary five-set win. The match featured a seemingly endless run of unbelievable moments, but none were greater than the 20-point tiebreaker in the fourth set.
If Sunday’s final features even a fraction of excitement as last year’s battle, we’re in store for a fantastic conclusion to the 2017 Wimbledon Championships.
That said, Federer is playing some of the best tennis of his career in 2017. He’s lost just two matches all year, and both of those came at smaller tournaments after lengthy breaks. On Friday, he wasn’t in peak form, while Berdych was playing some terrific tennis, but the latter still couldn’t find a way to win as much as a set against Fed-Ex.
What was once a resurgence for Federer has turned into transcendence. And in the biggest spot on his best surface, he has to be considered a strong favorite. Cilic is a compelling opponent with the power and serve to make this thing interesting, but Federer is on a crash course with history.