PARIS: A superb, seize-the-moment volley from midfielder Luka Modric saw Croatia open their Euro 2016 account with victory over Turkey in the Parc des Princes.
The eventual margin was only 1-0 but it could have been several more, with the Croats being denied by the posts three times in the second half of a tough tussle.
Modric struck in the closing stages of the first half when the Turks only half-cleared a left-wing cross. The ball looped out towards the Real Madrid playmaker who struck it first time. Goalkeeper Volkan Babacan only saw the shot late through a forest of defenders and failed to reach the ball which dipped under his outstretched hands.
Turkey created little serious danger after Ozan Tufan had a header saved by keeper Danijel Subasic.
At the other end in the second half Darijo Srna clipped the bar with a free kick, Ivan Perisic headed against the posts and Marcelo Brozovic twice went close as Croatia claimed an important win in a tough group which also features holders Spain and Czech Republic.
Turkey reached the semi-finals at Euro 2008 after beating Croatia on penalties, but will have to show a vast improvement if they are even to progress out of their group.
Croatia next play the Czechs on Friday in Saint-Etienne while Turkey face Spain later the same evening in Nice.