Cilic boosts Finals hopes as Berdych defeat opens the door

Getty Images

Tomas Berdych's ATP World Tour Finals hopes suffered a major blow as he was dumped out in the first round of the Vienna Open by Nikoloz Basilashvili, with Marin Cilic picking up a potentially important win at the Swiss Indoors Basel.

Second seed Berdych occupies the final qualifying spot for the O2 Arena extravaganza by dint of Rafael Nadal's season-ending wrist problems, but this defeat seriously damages his hopes of making it.

Berdych looked sluggish throughout, and had to stave off five break points in the second set to avoid a straight-sets defeat courtesy of a tie-break.

However, Basilashvili was not deterred, running out a 6-4 6-7 (5-7) 7-5 winner. The world number 107's reward for his first career victory against a top-10 opponent is a second-round meeting with Russian wildcard Karen Khachanov.

Cilic is two places adrift of Berdych in the race to London, but had no trouble in easing past Mikhail Youzhny 6-4 6-2, dropping only 10 points on serve in the entire match.

Kei Nishikori is already qualified for the finals and tuned up in Switzerland with a 7-5 6-1 win over Dusan Lajovic.

Donald Young and Federico Delbonis were also winners in Basel on Monday, while John Isner, Ivo Karlovic and Damir Dzumhur were victorious in Vienna.