Federer wins 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 6-1!!
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 4-1 Cilic: A 66-second service hold from Federer.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 3-1 Cilic*: A much-needed hold to love from Cilic.
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 3-0 Cilic: Federer holds as the crowd goes wild.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 2-0 Cilic*: Deep return from the Swiss and he breaks.
And he breaks!
Break point Federer...
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-6 1-0 Cilic: Crucial hold for Federer as he staves off a pair of early break opportunities.
Break point Cilic...
Cilic takes the fourth set 6-3! Here's to a fifth set!
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-5 Cilic: Cilic breaks and will serve for the set.
He saves both, but Cilic gets another one...
Double break point...
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-4 Cilic*: The Croatian holds. How crucial could that prove?
Break point Federer...
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-3 Cilic: We're back on serve in set four. Inexplicable collapse from Federer.
Triple break point...
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-2 Cilic*: The Croatian is struggling with his racket tension as he continues to gesture towards his box, but he holds to keep the match within distance.
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 3-1 Cilic: Federer produces a remarkable sliced winner to hold, much like his hot shot against Berdych in Miami last year.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 2-1 Cilic*: Cilic staves off break point with a timely ace and holds, crucially.
Break point for Federer...
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 2-0 Cilic: Cilic castigating himself as Federer consolidates his break of serve to 15.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 6-3 1-0 Cilic*: The Croatian attempts a hare-brained sliced volley and Federer breaks.
And he takes it!
Break point for Federer from 0-30...
Federer wins the third set 6-3!
Triple set point...
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 5-3 Cilic*: The Croatian holds to love to force Federer to serve for the set.
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 5-2 Cilic: The Swiss now firmly in control.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 4-2 Cilic*: A deep return prompts a wild backhand from Cilic and he breaks.
Triple break point for Federer...
*Federer 6-2 6-7 (5) 3-2 Cilic: Federer looking much more composed as he pulls Cilic across the baseline.
Federer 6-2 6-7 (5) 2-2 Cilic*: Little to separate both players.
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 2-1 Cilic: Federer beginning to find his first serve more regularly.
Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 1-1 Cilic*: Cilic responds.
*Federer 6-2 6-7(5) 1-0 Cilic: The Swiss shakes off any cobwebs to hold to 15.
Cilic takes the second set 7-6(5)!
And he brings up two set points with a forehand winner...
Cilic holds his own deal and leads 5-4...
Federer grabs a crucial mini-break with a blistering cross-court backhand that unsettles Cilic, but the Croatian immediately restores parity, 3-3 at the changeover...
Federer responds with two holds of his own...
Cilic holds to begin the breaker...
*Federer 6-2 6-6 Cilic: Most convincing hold in a while from Federer, whose ace down the T forces a tie-break.
Federer 6-2 5-6 Cilic*: Emphatic hold from the world number four as he holds to love to force at least a tie-break.
*Federer 6-2 5-5 Cilic: Tense moments for the Swiss but he profits from a lax backhand from Cilic on break point to hold.
Set point for Cilic after a Federer double fault...
Federer 6-2 4-5 Cilic*: The Croatian saves the break opportunity with a second serve ace down the T before stringing together three straight points. Federer will serve to stay in the set.
Break point for Federer after a sumptuous backhand down the line...
*Federer 6-2 4-4 Cilic: The Swiss throws in an uncharacteristic double fault and is being worked extremely hard, but he holds under duress.
*Federer 6-2 3-3 Cilic: Another rapid service hold from the defending champion to shift the pressure back onto Cilic's shoulders.
Federer 6-2 2-3 Cilic*: But he holds to compete this set within his grasp.
Federer swarms the Cilic second serve and fashions break point...
*Federer 6-2 2-2 Cilic: The Swiss holds to 15.
Federer 6-2 1-2 Cilic*: Cilic saves a pair of break points in an eight-minute service hold. Showing much more composure.
Break point from Federer from 15-40...
*Federer 6-2 1-1 Cilic: Federer saves both break point as he reels off four straight points to hold.
Two break points for Cilic...
Federer 6-2 0-1 Cilic*: More promising start from the Croatian, whose finding great joy with the serve out wide.
Federer, remarkably, has lost only two points on his serve.
A hold to 15 and the Swiss takes the opening set. Cilic will have to display incredible fortitude to salvage this match. Federer is fit and firing.
Federer wins the first 6-2 after 24 minutes!
Double set point for Federer...
Federer 5-2 Cilic*: Cilic holds to love.
*Federer 5-1 Cilic: The Croatian's unforced error tally stands at twelve as Federer holds to move a game away from the opening set.
Federer 4-1 Cilic*: The Croatian properly utilising his weapons and he is on the board for the first time in this match.
*Federer 4-0 Cilic: Second successive straightforward service hold from the Swiss.
Federer 3-0 Cilic*: The Croatian saves one but his backhand cross-court sails long and the Swiss confirms the double break of serve.
Three break points for Federer after Cilic sends a inside-out forehand wide.
*Federer 2-0 Cilic: The Swiss consolidates to love and has began the match in blistering fashion.
Federer 1-0 Cilic*: The Swiss breaks Cilic's resolve as he sends an overhead into the net.
Break point for Federer...
Please be sure to tune in when players arrive on court at around 3:30AM ET. After an enthralling women's final between Caroline Wozniacki and Simona Halep, it is sure to be a classic.
?"Roger has been one of the more successful players at these stages of Grand Slams, and also at a Grand Slam level his performances were such a long period of time, especially when it gets to quarterfinals, semifinals, finals, he's getting better and better and playing great tennis. So with him it's always a big challenge."
The Croatian praised Federer's ability to raise his level during the latter stages of tournaments.
"I think, overall, I'm feeling really good - and that's thanks to my guys, my fitness coach, they are making me work really hard. It's obviously great that I have two days off, so it's going to be a nice one on Sunday.
Cilic did not drop serve in his victory over Edmund and, most importantly, he feels fit heading into the challenge of the final.
"I like his attitude. He's very professional. He's always very much the same regardless of whether he wins or loses. I like that attitude. On the court he's a winner.
"If the big moments come back, he can attain this level. Not easily, but he can get there from time to time.
"I definitely think it helped him [Cilic], winning the US Open in 2014 gave him great belief he can do it again," said the world number two.
Federer described the victory as "bittersweet" and, looking ahead, says he is wary of the challenge Cilic poses after the pair practiced together in Maldives during the off-season.
"At some point it just hurts too much and you can't take it anymore, and when you realise there's no way you can come back and you make things really worse, it's better to stop."
"I've played with blisters in the past, it hurts a lot," said the Swiss.
Federer comes into Sunday's final the fitter of the two after his brief semifinal exertions, but he was sympathetic to Chung's motives, especially so after it reduced Cilic to tears in their final at Wimbledon last year.
The Croatian blasted the 19-time major winner off the court in the semifinals in Flushing Meadows before he claimed the first Grand Slam title of his career.
The Swiss has triumphed in their last three meetings -- including a five-set victory at Wimbledon in 2016 after trailing by two sets -- but he will be mindful of his defeat to Cilic at the US Open in 2014.
The omens are good for Federer as he enters the final boasting a 8-1 head-to-head record over the Croatian.
Prior to that Cilic eased through the opening three rounds, dropping only a single set in his first round victory over Vasek Pospisil. Joao Sousa and Ryan Harrison were tamed before the Croatian came from a set down to oust US Open semifinalist Pablo Carreno-Busta in the fourth round.
With their quarterfinal poised at two-all Nadal called it quits after struggling physically and the extra reserves in the Croatian's tank helped him prevail over Kyle Edmund in the semifinal.
Cilic, meanwhile, was forced to go through Rafael Nadal to reach his third Grand Slam final, although he too profited from a retirement.
Federer produced his most accomplished showing of the two weeks when he triumphed 7-6(1), 6-3, 6-4, recovering from a 5-2 deficit in the first set.
Marton Fucsovics fairytale was extinguished by the world number two in the fourth round which set-up a meeting with Tomas Berdych, whom he faced three times in 2017.
He dispatched Aljaz Bedene and Jan-Lennard Struff without too much fuss in the opening two rounds before he tamed Richard Gasquet in round three.
Federer, the two seed, has enjoyed a stress-free route to the final and is yet to drop a set - which bears similarities to his triumph at SW19 last summer.
There, he faced today's opponent, Cilic, and it was a one-sided affair after the Croatian complained of foot blisters and required medical attention.
The 36-year-old defeated Rafael Nadal in a compelling five-setter twelve months ago and he has went from strength to strength since then, adding his 19th major at Wimbledon six months later.
Federer will contest his 30th Grand Slam final after profiting from a second set retirement from Hyeon Chung in Friday's semifinal. The Swiss is looking to equal Novak Djokovic's tally of six Australian Open titles after reigning supreme here last year.
Hi all, I'm Craig Vickers and welcome to VAVEL USA's LIVE coverage of the 2018 Australian Open men's final between Roger Federer and Marin Cilic. Play is set to begin at 3:30AM ET where I will bring you news and notes to bring you up to speed!