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Clay specialist Cecchinato lifts Croatia title on return to red dirt

22 July 2018 22:49

Marco Cecchinato's breakthrough year on the ATP Tour continued apace at the Croatia Open Umag as he collected a second career title with a straight-sets win over Guido Pella.

The Italian has thrived on clay in 2018 and reached the semi-finals of the French Open, beating Novak Djokovic along the way.

His performances on grass were less impressive at Eastbourne and Wimbledon, but a return to the red dirt brought another tournament victory.

Cecchinato dominated the opening set and moved ahead 6-2 with ease, converting two of the three break chances he fashioned on the Pella serve.

Finishing off the match proved a tougher task as Pella upped his game, the Argentine taking a 4-2 lead at one point before Cecchinato rallied.

Having forced a tie-break, the world number 27 raced into a 4-0 lead, a deficit Pella could not recover as Cecchinato completed a 6-2 7-6 (7-4) victory.

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