ATP Zagreb Indoors 2014: Marin Cilic and Benjamin Becker record contrasting victories
Last Updated: 03/02/14 10:45pm
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Marin Cilic began his bid to win the ATP Zagreb Indoors title for a fourth time with a 6-4 6-4 victory over fellow Croatian Mate Delic.
Cilic - the fifth seed - hammered down 14 aces, including four of them in the last game of the match against his wild-card opponent, to ease through to the second round after 71 minutes on court.
The 25-year-old is hoping to defend his crown after defeating Jurgen Melzer in last year's final. He was also successful on home soil in 2009 and 2010.
"It was really solid," Cilic told the ATP Tour website. "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."
Benjamin Becker also cleared his opening hurdle, though the German had to save no less than seven match points to see off Jesse Huta Galung 6-7 (7/4) 6-3 7-6 (8/6).
Becker denied his opponent twice on his own serve at 5-2 down and then Galung couldn't convert three more opportunities in the next game.
The Dutchman also let slip a 5-1 lead in the tie-break, allowing his opponent to climb off the canvas and set up a clash with compatriot Tommy Haas.