Alexander Zverev vs Marin Cilic ATP Rome Preview, Predictions and Live Stream: Can Zverev keep hot streak going in Rome semifinals?

Ricky Dimon in ATP 19 May 2018
  • Alexander Zverev vs Marin Cilic is live from Rome on Saturday, 19 May from 8:00pm local time/7:00pm BST
  • Zverev leads the head-to-head series 4-1 and is 16-2 on clay this season going into Saturday
  • Watch and bet on tennis live from Rome at bet365 > live streaming > tennis (geo-restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify) 
Marin Cilic celebrates after winning his quarterfinal match against Pablo Carreno Busta at the Foro Italico on May 18, 2018. (Photo by Andreas SOLARO/AFP/Getty)

Alexander Zverev finally lost a set on Friday, but he is still through to the Rome semifinals for a Saturday showdown against Marin Cilic.

Alexander Zverev vs Marin Cilic is live from Rome on Saturday, 19 May from 8:00pm local time/7:00pm BST 
Watch and bet on tennis live from Rome at bet365 > live streaming > tennis (geo-restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify)  

Is Alexander Zverev a Masters 1000 specialist? He is not exactly chump change at 250s, 500s, and Grand Slams (well, he has always struggled at slams), but he has always been at his best at the 1000-point level. At 21 years old, Zverev has already won three of these things--including the Internazionali BNL d'Italia last season. He also won last summer in Montreal, finished runner-up earlier this spring in Miami, and just last week lifted the winner's trophy in Madrid.

Despite a rigorous workload that is highlighted by a 16-2 clay-court record (15-1 in four ATP tournaments) dating back to early April, the world No. 3 is still going strong in Rome. Zverev, who did not drop a set or even lose serve a single time in Madrid, went on a 23-set winning streak before finally surrendering one to David Goffin in a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 defeat of David Goffin in the quarterfinals. Zverev preceded that effort by beating Matteo Berrettini and Kyle Edmund in straight sets.

ATP Rome Live Stream: Live tennis from the Foro Italico 

ROME, ITALY - MAY 18: Alexander Zverev of Germany gives the thumbs up in his match against David Goffin of Belgium during day six of the Internazionali BNL dItalia 2018 tennis at Foro Italico on May 18, 2018 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
"(I'm) just happy to be in another semifinals," the second seed said after coming back from a break down in the third set to beat Goffin. "It's my third week (playing) in a row. Of course I'm a little bit tired. But this is part of the game and in the important moments you have to find a way. And that's what I did. I came up with unbelievable shots at the end and I'm in the semifinals. That's all that matters."

Next up for Zverev' is a sixth career meeting with Marin Cilic on Saturday. The German enjoying a 4-1 lead in the head-to-head series and has won four straight against the current world No. 5 since coming out on the short end in their first contest at the 2015 Washington, D.C. tournament. Zverev has since won three times on hard courts and once on clay--the latter by beating Cilic 6-7(3), 6-3, 6-4 at last season's Madrid Masters. Three of Zverev's four wins have required finals sets and these two competitors have never played a match that was more lopsided than 7-5, 7-6 (that was the scoreline in Cilic's victory three years ago in Washington, D.C.).

"It's going to be a very tough one," Zverev commented. "We're not dissimilar players. We're actually quite similar, both around two meters tall, both serving well and actually move quite well on this surface.... It's going to be a fun one."

Cilic, who reached the Monte-Carlo quarterfinals last month, is heating up at just the right time prior to the French Open with victories in Rome over Ryan Harrison (in a third-set tiebreaker), Benoit Paire, and Pablo Carreno Busta. He did not lose more than four games in any set against either Paire or Carreno Busta.

“I’m feeling great [after reaching] my first semifinal on clay at a Masters 1000 event,” Cilic said after routing Carreno Busta 6-3, 6-3 on Friday. "That's a good achievement. I was waiting many years for it to happen, so it’s definitely a happy moment for sure.

“I served incredibly well, both on first and second serve. That was extremely important; it gave me a lot of freedom in my game. When I'm serving that well, everything else comes a little bit more naturally. On return, I gave myself a few chances and managed to break. I wouldn't say it was perfect, but it's difficult to have an extremely perfect match in the quarterfinals."

“I think I (have) improved as a player over the years on clay," the Croat concluded. "Last year I found a really good combination of training and also preparing for the matches.”

Although Cilic is supremely confident right now, Cilic's preparation has probably been more ideal for this one. He got off the court much quicker and much earlier on Friday than did Zverev, who may finally run out of gas.




Alexander Zverev vs David Goffin is live from Rome on Saturday, 19 May from 8:00pm local time/7:00pm BST 
Watch and bet on tennis live from Rome at bet365 > live streaming > tennis (geo-restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify)  


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Alexander Zverev vs Marin Cilic ATP Rome Preview, Predictions and Live Stream: Can Zverev keep hot streak going in Rome semifinals?

Alexander Zverev's Rome title defense continues against Marin Cilic during semifinal action on Saturday. Read our preview, predictions and stream the match live online.

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