Cilic will open for Croats

The opening-round Davis Cup tie between Croatia and host Italy will commence Friday with a singles rubber between Marin Cilic and Italian Fabio Fognini.

The best-of-five matchup will be staged on indoor red clay at Palavela.

Cilic-Fognini will be followed by a match between Croat Ivan Dodig and 18th- ranked Andreas Seppi.

Saturday's doubles rubber will pit Croats Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic against an Italian duo of Simone Bolelli and Paolo Lorenzi, while Sunday's reverse singles call for the world No. 13 Cilic to battle Seppi and Dodig to take on Fognini.

The Croats are captained by Zeljko Krajan, while the Italians are piloted by Corrado Barazzutti. Croatia is 2-0 all-time versus Italy, with their last meeting coming in Dubrovnik in 2008.

Both Croatia and Italy own one Davis Cup title apiece.

The Croatia-Italy winner will meet the Spain-Canada victor in the quarterfinals in April.