World Tour Finals round-robin preview and pick: Berdych vs. Cilic

Tomas Berdych and Marin Cilic face a virtual must-win situation on Wednesday in London if they want to qualify for the semis of the year-end championship. Both men are coming off opening blowout losses.

There is some good news for Tomas Berdych and Marin Cilic: one of them has to win on Wednesday at the World Tour Finals.

Neither man came close to winning his respective opener on Monday. In fact, they suffered twin 6-1, 6-1 beatdowns; Berdych against Stan Wawrinka and Cilic at the hands of Novak Djokovic. As a result, an almost certain reality is that the loser of Wednesday’s clash will be eliminated from semifinal contention.

There will be no secrets between these two familiar foes. Berdych and Cilic have faced each other on nine previous occasions, including three times this season. Cilic has won twice in a row but still trails the overall head-to-head series 5-4. The Croat prevailed 7-6(5), 6-4, 7-6(6) at Wimbledon and 6-2, 6-4, 7-6(4) in the U.S. Open quarterfinals on his way to the title.
Cilic press
That triumph virtually single-handedly put Cilic in the World Tour Finals, although he was solid throughout the season with a current record of 54-19 to his credit. Berdych has the same number of match victories (54) despite capturing half of Cilic’s title total (four to two).
Berdych 2
It is difficult to be encouraged about either player’s prospects after what transpired on Monday, but Cilic’s double-bagel setback can at least be explained. The world No. 9 was playing his first-ever match in this event and he was going up against an in-form world No. 1 in Djokovic. Berdych, on the other hand, had no excuse.

Throw Cilic’s recent success against the Czech into the mix and the U.S. Open champ has to like his chances of getting on track in London.

Pick: Cilic in 3

6 Comments on World Tour Finals round-robin preview and pick: Berdych vs. Cilic

  1. To be honest, I did not foresee Berdych or Cilic faring quite so badly (nor did they I’m sure) so it’ll be intriguing to see which of them rises to the occasion today. I’m going out on a limb……………
    Berdych in 3

    • .A pat on the back for me for backing Berdych even if the scoreline was wrong. I’d rather assumed Cilic would’ve got over his initial stage-fright and make it competitive.

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