Clinical Nishikori into Brisbane ATP final


Kei Nishikori beat Jeremy Chardy for the sixth consecutive time on Saturday to reach his second Brisbane International final 6-2, 6-2.

But Nishikori, who had lost nine consecutive ATP finals over 52 tournaments in almost three years, broke the Russian player's serve on four consecutive points in the final game to clinch the match in just 2 hours, 6 minutes, at Pat Rafter Arena. I felt there is no chance I can win this match.

"Maybe first match [against Denis Kudla] was a little bit tight, but after Dimi's [Grigor Dimitrov] match and today's match was nearly flawless, I would say".

"I managed to come back in the second set, but he played unbelievable and deserved it", Medvedev said of Nishikori. "For sure, this is a better start... but playing good tennis [and being] very happy and healthy is one of the best keys for me".

Returning to Sydney as the World No.16, Nishikori believes that the Russian has the potential to crack the top ten Down Under.

The 26-year-old has always been touted as a future victor of a Grand Slam, but despite a stint as world number one, her best result in a major was runner-up to Angelique Kerber at the 2016 US Open.

However, any hopes that he had of winning the match were dashed by the Japanese whose forehand began to dominate in the third set, wearing down Medvedev's resistance, as he gave up his serve twice.

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"So I had to start at some ATP Challenger Tour events", said Nishikori.

Nishikori was runner-up to Dimitrov in 2017 and will go into Sunday's final against fourth seeded Russian Daniil Medvedev as firm favourite.

The world number nine defeated Russia's Daniil Medvedev, the man who beat Britain's Andy Murray, 6-4 3-6 6-2.

"She helped me just to get motivated a little bit more, to get going".

In the women's tournament Karolina Pliskova recovered to blaze past Ajla Tomljanovic 6-1 1-6 6-1 and into the Brisbane International semi-finals.

"I'm going to go there and practice tomorrow and see how it goes and decide from there", he told AAP.