David Goffin vs Marin Cilic: Rome Masters Preview and Prediction
Sixth seed David Goffin takes on Marin Cilic in a mouth-watering clash at the 2020 Rome Masters.
Goffin is coming to this tournament with a four-set defeat against Denis Shapovalov in the fourth round of the US Open.
Cilic kickstarted his campaign with a hard-fought three-set win over Alexander Bublik in the round of 64. Bublik fired 17 aces and took the first set 7-6 but lost firepower in the second and third sets as Cilic took control. Surprisingly, Bublik could not convert even a single break point out of nine opportunities.
Head to Head record
Goffin leads the head to head record 4-3 against Cilic. They have met in the Rome Masters before in 2017 which Cilic won in straight sets.
Strengths of Goffin
Being an aggressive baseliner, Goffin prefers to finish off points from the back of the court. Since he is not a serve-oriented player, he relies on his precise groundstroke to trouble his opponents. The Belgian possesses a brilliant down-the-line backhand. He is very effective in turning defense into offense. But, he needs to improve the consistency of his serve.
Strengths of Cilic
With his towering height, Cilic has a big-serve and relies on first-strike tennis. He uses his forehands mixed with topspin to control the rallies. His backhand has become error-prone off late. The Croat has remarkable footwork and possesses good defense.
Goffin and Cilic lost in the same stage to Juan Martin Del Potro and Jan-Lennard Struff in last year's tournament and would be keen to make amends this time. Both players are equally competitive and would battle it hard from the baseline.
Having reached the semifinals of the Rome Masters in 2018, Cilic knows what it takes to have a deep run once again. Goffin would look for a quick start and tire out Cilic with his relentless accuracy. The first set would be crucial for both the players to sustain the momentum.
Prediction - Marin Cilic to win in three sets
Featured image credits: Belga News Agency