Marin Cilic will look to continue his gradual comeback from injury when he begins his clay court campaign in Monte Carlo against Germany’s Florian Mayer. This is the fourth time that the two competitors will meet on the ATP World Tour, with Mayer leading the series 2-1. However, the last time they crossed paths was back in 2011.
Following a long layoff due to a right shoulder injury, reigning US Open champion Marin Cilic began his 2015 season this week in Indian Wells, where suffered a premature exit in his opening match in the desert. While the world No. 10 lost to Juan Monaco in straight sets 6-4, 6-4, he was pleased with his performance, as he didn’t have high expectations for his first match back on tour.
It was a difficult road to his return at Indian Wells, and Cilic was not afraid to admit it. He even had some lingering pain in his shoulder, which is why he was unable to serve well.
“I wasn’t expecting that I’m going to be playing great tennis, which is always difficult in the first couple of matches,” he said. “Some players do feel great from the beginning, but I’m the kind of player that needs a few matches to get into it.”
He will begin his campaign against Florian Mayer, who reached the second round of the tournament with a straight sets victory over Mikhail Youzhny, whom he beat 7-6(8), 6-4. He struck six aces, won 72% of his first service points and saved a break point to close out the match in one hour and 32 minutes.
This marks the fourth time that Cilic and Florian will cross paths on the professional tour, with Mayer leading the series 2-1. However, this is their first meeting in nearly four years and will certainly be a different encounter than any of their previous meetings. It is difficult to determine if Cilic will be able to snap his four-match losing streak this week in Monte Carlo.
Prediction: Florian Mayer in Three Sets