ZAGREB (Reuters) – Croatia’s top-ranked player Marin Cilic and Argentine Federico Delbonis will get the 2016 Davis Cup final underway in the tie’s opening singles rubber on Friday, followed by a clash between Ivo Karlovic and Juan Martin Del Potro.
World number six Cilic, the 2014 U.S. Open winner, will start as a strong favorite against Delbonis while Karlovic returns to Croatia’s Davis Cup squad after a four-year absence to face 2009 U.S. Open winner Del Potro.
Thursday’s draw in the iconic Vatroslav Lisinski concert hall also pitted Croatia’s Franko Skugor and Ivan Dodig against Leonardo Mayer and Guido Pella in Saturday’s doubles.
Cilic will take on Del Potro and Karlovic is scheduled to face Delbonis in Sunday’s reverse singles.
Croatia, winners in 2005, are bidding for their second title while quadruple runners-up Argentina are looking for their first, standing out as the only nation to have lost four finals without lifting the trophy.
Argentina have a 3-0 Davis Cup record against Croatia, winning quarter-finals in 2002 and 2012 in Buenos Aires and 2006 in Zagreb.
(Writing by Zoran Milosavljevic; Editing by Martyn Herman)