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Sunday, 15 July 2012

Marin Čilić Victorious At 2012 ATP Croatia Open In Umag

There are a total of 5 stops through the year in Croatia on the ATP and WTA tours. (There were 7 stops until just a few years ago, so Croatians like their tennis) With Zagreb, Rijeka and Umag being the locations.  I briefly mentioned on a previous post the ATP Croatian Open that takes place in the town of Umag on the Croatian coast, but just realized that I've never done an actual post about it. Perfect timing now I guess, as Croatia's current best tennis player Marin Čilić was victor in the finals today.  He was in the finals last year, but today is actually the first time a Croatian won on home soil at this tournament since 1990.  A nice ending to the 10 day event filled professional tennis tournament.  I just finished watching it and it's definitely on my list of things to do next time I'm in the area, except next time I'm staying for good.  Overall seems like a lot of cool stuff to do besides attending the tennis matches, and  if none of the accompanying events are your thing, well...the beach is that way.  You can click onto the tournaments official website  for much more info, pics and interesting videos about what went on during the last 10 days in the coastal town of Umag.

Cilic Cruises To First Umag Trophy


Second seed Marin Cilic captured his second crown of the season on Sunday at the ATP Vegeta Croatia Open Umag, dismissing No. 4 seed Marcel Granollers 6-4, 6-2 to become the first home winner in Umag since 1990. He did not drop a set during his title run.

“It’s a real privilege to be among these champions,” Cilic said. “It was really special this week. I played great tennis and I was enjoying every moment in my matches. I’m really glad I won for my supporters, my team and myself.”

Granollers led 4-2 in the first set before Cilic went on a torrid stretch, winning nine consecutive games. The World No. 15 capitalised on five of his seven break points and won 51 per cent of his return points to claim victory at the ATP World Tour 250 clay-court event in one hour and 32 minutes. With the win, Cilic has defeated the Spaniard in five of their six FedEx ATP Head 2 Head meetings.

“Marcel is a really dangerous player, so it was not easy in the beginning. He was playing really well and not giving me too much,” said Cilic. “After I found some solutions, I kept with him and played great tennis. It was maybe my best match of the week. I had a streak of winning nine games in a row, so that was amazing. It helped me to relax and know that I was on the right path.”

The 23-year-old Croat improved to an 8-7 final record. He celebrated his third triumph on home soil, adding to the back-to-back titles he claimed at the PBZ Zagreb Indoors in 2009 and 2010. In June, he lifted his first grass-court trophy at the AEGON Championships in London.

Granollers was bidding to win his first title of the year and dropped to 3-2 in ATP World Tour title matches. “I think Marin was much better than me. He played a very good match,” said Granollers. “I was up 4-2 in the first set but I did not close out the set. Marin started to play better and better. The second set, I didn’t know how to win a point. I congratulate him on how he played."

Various high lights from the final day of the Croatia Open.

The awards presentation and words from the players.

23rd ATP Vegeta Croatia Open

During the ATP Croatia Open there are a variety of events to attend and experience. The tennis action is the main thing, but there's so much more to see and do around the tennis center facilities. On top of it all the beach is literally just steps away.  I added just a few interesting vids to show what goes on.  Many more vidoes, pics and information at


Many events take place during the Croatian Open.  Some less well known ones are the tennis clinics attended by children of various ages, who get to meet and get tennis tips from professional tennis players taking part in the tournament.  In this case Croatian tennis star Marin Cilic.

Croatian chicks playing drums and electric guitars? Yep.  Fairly common there actually, believe me.  An all-girl rock band that entertained people during the tournament. There was lots of musical acts and entertainment to check out.

The Croatian Open is a great time to present to the tournament visitors all the award winning wines, truffles, cheeses, and gastronomy in general, especially from the coastal Istra region.  Some really great tasting seafood creations from Croatian chefs who came to show their stuff. There's also various contests and musical acts that perform.  Something for everyone.

Short footage of the number 1 seed for this years tournament and 2008 winner Fernando Verdasco.  He says he prefers biking around instead of driving/being driven around because of the scenery.  He says that he always looks forward to participating at the Umag Croatia Open.

Of course what's a major ATP tennis event without some kind of beauty/fashionshow catwalk thing. 18 year old Gea Mišeljić from Zagreb won the  Miss Hostess pageant

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