Marin Cilic Pulls Out of Davis Cup, Will be Croatia's "Most Devoted Fan"

By 7 November 2019

November 7, 2019 - Marin Cilic announced on Thursday morning that he would not play in the Davis Cup this month in Madrid, to be held from November 18-24.

In a Facebook status to his 175,000 fans and an Instagram post to his 196,000 followers, Marin revealed:

With the 2019 season finished, I wanted to share an update with you all. The last year and a half has been a real struggle mentally and physically for me. Even with all the preventative work and rehab my team and I did, my recurring knee injury has continued to give me problems, and as the season progressed it was becoming more evident that surgery was inevitable. I recently did an ultrasound and luckily the results were better than expected.

The rehab work was successful enough that surgery is not necessary at this stage, however, I will need to undergo a few minor interventions which will keep me off the tennis court for a longer period and unfortunately means I will not be able to compete at the Davis Cup this month. I am extremely disappointed by this, but I believe in my teammates and will be their most devoted fan.

In the meantime, I will dedicate myself to getting back to form so that I can enter the 2020 season healthier, more prepared, and more motivated than ever. Thank you all for your constant support and I look forward to seeing you back on tour in 2020.”

Marin Cilic thus finished the 2019 season as the 39th best tennis player in the world. 

Croatia coach Zeljko Krajan allegedly knew about Cilic's problems and was ready to act in the event Cilic could not continue. According to Sportske Novosti, Krajan will return 40-year-old Ivo Karlovic to the national team. Karlovic jumped in back in 2016 thanks to a similar situation in the finals against Argentina. Then, Karlovic lost a crucial match against Federico Delbonis. Krajan’s other options were the much more inexperienced Viktor Galovic, Nino Serdarušić and Borna Gojo.

Croatia plays in Group B in Spain against Spain and Russia. Three matches will be played in one day, two in the singles competition and one in the doubles. The winners of the groups and the two best runner-up teams advance to the quarterfinals.

Borna Coric, Ivan Dodig, Nikola Mektic, and Mate Pavic will play for Croatia along with Ivo Karlovic.

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