A pretty tight first set :
The Croat had the better start getting an early breakpoint in the first game of the match but the Orange, California native did a good job saving it with a big ace and went on to hold serve. The number nine seed had another chance to break at 1-1 but was denied once again by the American big serve.
At 4-3 the world number 71 had his first chance to break but the tables were turned and it was the 40th ranked Croat who would save it with a great volley winner. The American had two more break points but failed to convert as Cilic would hold serve playing some great tennis.
Johnson had four set points at 6-5 but once again couldn't convert and the first set would be decided by a tiebreaker. The Redondo Beach, California resident got an early break in the breaker when at 1-0 the number nine seed would send a ball into the net to gift the American a 2-0 lead.
The world number 71 would take that lead and run away with the breaker winning it 7-3 thus taking the first set 7-6.
American upset :
The American used the momentum he got winning the first set and this time it was his turn to have early breakpoints in the first game of the second set. He broke the Croat when the number nine seed would hit two unforced errors in a row for a 2-0 lead.
That was the only break that he needed and served for the match at 5-4 and would serve it to the match 7-6 and 6-4 in two hours on the dot. Johnson will now play the winner of the Davidovich Fokina vs Damir Dzumhur which is the first match scheduled for tomorrow.
Day 1 results :
It was a busy day on day one of the Bett1 Hulks Championship in Cologne at the Lanxess Arena. On Center Court, Gilles Simon started the day by beating Jordan Thompson to set up a second-round encounter with Canadian Denis Shapovalov. These two previously met a couple of weeks ago in round one of the French Open.
Yoshito Nishioka caused the first upset of the day beating Kyle Edmund in straight sets 6-4 and 6-0, Egor Gerasimov broke German hearts by beating Daniel Altmaier 6-1 and 6-0 to set up a match with Felix Auger Aliassime who was the runner up last week.