LONDON (Reuters) – Defending champion Marin Cilic was cut down to size by Argentine Diego Schwartzman in the second round at the Queen’s Club Championships on Thursday as the rain that has dogged the tournament finally relented.
The big-serving Croatian, the fifth seed, lost 6-4 6-4 in the opening match on centre court — a result all the more surprising as it was only the diminutive Schwartzman’s third career victory on grass.
Cilic, who beat Novak Djokovic to win the title for the second time last year, never looked entirely comfortable and dropped serve three times as he slipped to defeat.
Second seed Kevin Anderson, runner-up at Wimbledon last year, also suffered a surprise second-round defeat as he was beaten 6-1 4-6 6-4 by Frenchman Gilles Simon.
Greek top seed Stefanos Tsitsipas, making his debut at the prestigious Wimbledon warmup event, belatedly moved through to the second round as he finished off home hope Kyle Edmund 6-3 7-5 having come off the previous night at 3-3 in the second set.
Tsitsipas needed seven match points to end home interest in the singles draw and set up a clash, later on Thursday, with Frenchman Jeremy Chardy.
Organisers have a packed schedule to get through on Thursday after Tuesday was washed out and only a handful of matches were completed on Wednesday. Three first-round matches were still to be completed at the start of play on Thursday.
(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Toby Davis)