Following a turbulent 2013 season, Marin Cilic is back to his winning ways. The world No. 37 arrived in Zagreb, where he is the defending champion, and began his week with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Mate Delic, where he fired 14 aces and lost just nine points on serve as he wrapped up victory in 71 minutes.The win brought Cilic to a 18-4 record at the Zagreb Indoor event, as he won the title in 2009, 2010 and 2013.
Equipped with the support of his new coach Goran Ivanisevic, Cilic believes that he has found a new understanding to the game and that Goran has helped him adapt and evolve his game.
“I already feel that [Goran has] helped me a lot, especially with my serve and a different understanding of the game. They are new things for me. I’m adapting to them and trying to put them in my game during the matches. I believe it’s going to work much better towards the end of the season.”
This is particularly evident with his serve, which Cilic admits is a weapon he has under-utilized these days.
“It was really solid,” said Cilic. “I would say my serve was working really well today. I thought Mate played a good match. Now I’m looking forward to my next match. It always feels great playing here in Zagreb; it always raises my form. I hope this week is going to help me improve my game and get confidence for the upcoming tournaments.”
Cilic will face Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic on Centre Court in the second round on Wednesday. The World No. 101 Lajovic defeated qualifier Pedja Krstin 6-2, 6-3 in the first round.