Cilic Wins Shanghai Opener, Boosts London Bid
Nitto ATP Finals hopeful Marin Cilic improved his chances of returning to The O2 in London for the prestigious season-ending tournament as he opened his Shanghai Rolex Masters title bid Tuesday with a 6-3, 7-6(5) win over Brit Kyle Edmund.
The Croatian will guarantee his spot at the Nitto ATP Finals if he wins the Shanghai title, which would be his second Masters 1000 crown (Cincinnati 2016). Cilic, who is currently sixth in the Emirates ATP Race To London, previously qualified in 2014 and ’16.
Cilic saved all three break points against the 22-year-old Edmund, prevailing in one hour and 38 minutes to move into the third round. The fourth seed will next face Chinese wild card Di Wu or American Steve Johnson.
Johnson, a quarter-finalist last week in Tokyo, advanced to the second round after No. 13 seed Nick Kyrgios retired after dropping the first set. The Australian had opened up a 4/2 lead in the opening set tie-break before Johnson reeled off five of the last six points to take it 7-6(5), before Kygrios called time.