Croatian tennis star Marin Cilic has finished his 2019 Priceline Pharmacy Kooyong Classic campaign with a perfect 2-0 record. The Croatian defeated former world No. 7 Fernando Verdasco 6-4 6-4 on the last day of the Kooyong event.
The 2014 US Open champion previously edged out 2018 Wimbledon runner-up Kevin Anderson in a thriller clash. Cilic needed to get some matches under his belt ahead of the Australian Open as he was unable to open his season at the Tata Open Maharashtra in Pune.
Meanwhile, rising Canadian star Denis Shapovalov debuted on the hard courts of Kooyong in style. The 19-year-old beat 2017 Paris Masters champion Jack Sock 6-2 3-6 10-3 in his first-ever match played in Kooyong to lift his confidence ahead of the Australian Open.
Shapovalov was added late to the Kooyong field as earlier this week he was beaten by Joao Sousa in the ASB Classic first round, in what was his first match of the season. Sock, who also opted not to play any ATP events before the Australian Open, suffered a three-set loss to Bernard Tomic on the opening day of Kooyong.
In an all-Australian doubles clash, John Peers and Aleksandar Vukic saw off John-Patrick Smith and Andrew Whittington 6-3 6-4. Meanwhile in the women's event, promising Australian Destanee Aiava earned a tough win over Romania's Sorana Cirstea.
Aiava, 18, came from a set down to beat Cirstea 2-6 6-4 11-9 and clinch her first Kooyong win in her fifth attempt. Full results:
Marin Cilic (CRO) d. Fernando Verdasco (ESP) 6-4 6-4
Denis Shapovalov (CAN) d. Jack Sock (USA) 6-2 3-6 10-3
John Peers (AUS) & Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) d. John-Patrick Smith (AUS) & Andrew Whittington (AUS) 6-3 6-4
Destanee Aiava (AUS) d. Sorana Cirstea (ROU) 2-6 6-4 11-9