Marcos Baghdatis had never won a match on grass until one month ago and had responded to a first round defeat to Romanian wild card Andrei Pavel in Halle by insisting: "Grass is for playing football".
But Baghdatis has quickly come to appreciate the finer points of a surface which is no longer his least favourite, after a captivating Wimbledon quarter-final win over Lleyton Hewitt.
The flamboyant Cypriot swatted the former champion's challenge 6-1, 5-7, 7-6, 6-2 with a performance which won over the crowd just as he had during his march to the Australian Open final earlier this year.
Now Baghdatis tells a different story, insisting: "I like grass courts and it fits my game playing really aggressive. There is nothing I don't like about it now."
Baghdatis' delightful mixture of searing ground strokes and audacious drop shots were a joy to behold and when he stood on the brink of victory his excitement betrayed the faintest flicker of a smile.
The thunderstorms raging around Wimbledon may have cleared by the time they got on court but Hewitt clearly did not expect to walk straight into a Cypriot cyclone.
It took Baghdatis, who was stretched to five sets in the first round by Scot Alan Mackin a mere 26 minutes to wrap up a first set of dazzling intensity, before he went on to double-break Hewitt at the start of the second.
Only vivid memories of the sixth-seeded Australian's legendary fighting qualities seemed to be separating the Centre Court crowd from an unexpectedly early retreat to the Pimm's tents.
Baghdatis was never going to keep going at such improbable pace and sure enough, Hewitt began to stir, double-breaking back before taking advantage of his tightening opponent to pull off a great escape.
Level at one set all, the match seemed destined to go in Hewitt's favour but again the remarkable Baghdatis rallied, breaking his opponent immediately and shutting away those second set nerves.
It was Baghdatis who grabbed the advantage, fashioning two set points at 6-4 and converting his second one with a sensational backhand winner down the line which sparked a flamboyant celebration.
Suddenly, unexpectedly, it was the champion prize-fighter Hewitt who began to fade along with the Centre Court light, as 21-year-old Baghdatis exhibited a maturity beyond his years.
With a Wimbledon semi-final within touching distance, Baghdatis saved his strongest series of service games for the fourth set, breaking Hewitt for a 3-1 lead with two blistering backhands.
There was to be no way back for the Australian, a man whose Wimbledon crown not to mention his recordequalling four title wins at Queen's Club boasted rather better grass-court pedigree.
Instead Baghdatis forced Hewitt to have to serve out to try to stay in the match and bossed the play enough to pressure one final error from his opponent and complete his fairytale grass-court conversion.
Earlier, Roger Federer was peace and harmony personified again as he treated the Centre Court to another exhibition of tennis perfection, dispatching Mario Ancic 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 to move into the last four.
Federer's domination on grass, the win over Ancic was his 46th victory in succession on the surface and he has still to lose a set at this Wimbledon, has reduced watching the champion to an exercise in predictability.
Perfection, granted, but predictability nonetheless.
Hence the muted atmosphere and respectful ripples of applause, rather than thrills, on Centre Court.
Nothing disturbs the Federer sang-froid.
Not two rain breaks on a day when the thunderstorms gathered over SW19. Not the arrival of two imposters on court from Real Fathers 4 Justice, complete with kiddies tennis rackets and headbands, one of whom served a ball towards his accomplice down by the Royal Box.
They were ushered away by police and stewards, just as swiftly as Federer got rid of Ancic, the Croatian who was the last man to beat the champion on grass, in straight sets in the first round back in 2002.
If Ancic was thinking of forming his own protest group against champions who routinely humiliate the rest then he could have been forgiven.
The truth is Ancic played well, served solidly, ripped passing shots down the wings and cross court.
But he did not come close to ruffling the Federer aura.
The first rain delay came with the score at two games each in the first set.
It clearly affected Federer less than Ancic, since the Croatian promptly lost his serve with the champion reeling off a series of forehand winners.
Ancic did have a chance, a solitary break point in the eighth game after Federer had served a double fault. It was swiftly snuffed out, however, and Federer wrapped up the set in clinical fashion.
If anything the second set was even more impressive, Federer lighting up the thundery gloom with a running cross-court forehand to break serve in the first game.
Rain halted proceedings again after the fifth game but Federer is not like any other human.
Federer said: "Rain delays usually slow me down but today they got me going."
And he duly sped through the rest of the encounter, breaking serve again in the first game of the third set and providing the symmetrical scoreline with a final thunderous ace.