Marin Cilic beats Frances Tiafoe, moves Croatia step closer to third Davis Cup final
The 29-year-old Cilic raced through the first set, saving the lone break point he faced and converting two of the four break-point opportunities he created
Marin Cilic eased past American Frances Tiafoe 6-1, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5) to move Croatia to within one win of its third appearance in the final of the Davis Cup, tennis' premier international team competition.
The world No. 6 needed two hours and 14 minutes on Friday to give his team a 2-0 lead over the United States in this semi-final tie, which is being played on outdoor clay at the Sportski centar Visnjik venue in this southwestern city, reports Efe. Earlier in the day, Borna Coric defeated Steve Johnson 6-4, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3 to give Croatia a 1-0 lead.
The 29-year-old Cilic raced through the first set, saving the lone break point he faced and converting two of the four break-point opportunities he created. Despite losing serve once in the second set, Cilic broke Tiafoe three more times to give himself a commanding lead in the match.
Tiafoe improved on serve in the third set and did not face a single break point. In the tiebreaker, the American struck his ninth ace of the match to grab a 3-0 lead, but Cilic rallied from 2-4 down to win four straight points. Although Tiafoe saved the first match point, Cilic clinched the victory with a service winner. Croatia is looking to reach their third Davis Cup final, having reached the championship tie in 2005, when Croatia won its lone title, and in 2016 when the Eastern European nation lost to Argentina.
The Croatian team can book a place in the final on Saturday, when the doubles duo of Ivan Dodig and Mate Pavic squares off against the US pair of Mike Bryan and Ryan Harrison. If the Croatian team loses the doubles rubber, the tie will continue on Sunday with Cilic taking on Johnson and - if necessary - Coric playing Tiafoe.
This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Except for the change in headline, the story has been provided "AS-IS," "AS AVAILABLE, without any verification or editing from our side. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever
Sign up for all the latest news, top galleries and trending videos from Mid-day.comSubscribe
Hardik Pandya thanks Nita Ambani for visiting him in London