Kei Nishikori is Determined to Move a Further at the Australian Open 2019

Published 01/22/2019, 6:32 PM EST
Nishikori in action at the 2019 Australian Open


The Japanese Number one tennis player, Kei Nishikori is all prepared to face the World Number one tennis player, Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open 2019. The Japanese battled past the Spaniard, Pablo Carreno Busta in the round-of-16, recovering from a loss of two sets. Nishikori’s 6-7 (8), 4-6, 7-6 (4), 6-4, 7-6 (8)  win on the Margaret Court Arena was a historic win of his career. His first three wins combined longed for eight hours and 42 minutes on the court and his fourth round tussle was dragged for five long hours against the Spaniard. Nishikori displayed some unbelievable mental fitness during his fourth round battle. 

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Nishikori injured his wrist in Cincinnati

The tennis season 2017, was dreadful for the Japanese shot-maker of tennis. His exit from the top 20 ranking of tennis, getting hit by a wrist injury and the tendon tear had put his professional life on the verge of despair. He was preparing for Cincinnati tournament and during the practice session, his wrist got impaired. Consequently, he decided to call off his tennis season. It was tough for him to overcome the injury-hit period of his career. After five months of hiatus from tennis, Nishikori recovered and came back on the circuit for the 2018 season. Even after resuming tennis, he played in such a way that his wrist not burdened. As a result of which, he changed his service motion.

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First Wimbledon Quarterfinal ever for Nishikori

The 2014 US Open finalist, Nishikori was involved in quite a lot tournaments the previous year and his run on the circuit during the 2018 season was decent enough. The bronze medallist at the Rio Olympics, Nishikori, stepped on the courts of Monte-Carlo for the first time since 2012 and the Japanese turned out to play against Nadal in the finals of the Monaco tournament. He reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon for the first time in his career and was vanquished by the ultimate champion, Djokovic. His performances post his loss at Wimbledon were satisfactory on the ATP tour, but however, at Flushing Meadows, he impeccably reserved the semi-final berth against Djokovic. Later, he reached the last eight in Paris and therefore reserved a place in London for the ATP World Tour Finals, and over there, Nishikori triumph over Roger Federer for the third time in his career. 

The Japanese might not have won a renowned title in the 2018 season but certainly, Nishikori recovered from his gruesome injury which had almost put his professional tennis under threat and most importantly, he ameliorated his ranking on the ATP circuit and he is back on the list of the top ten ATP men. It had dropped the year before, all due to his injury. The Nishikori began his 2019 season, in the best possible way he could, he pulled off his first ATP title in Brisbane since February 2016. At the Brisbane International, he broke his streak of nine consecutive final losses.

Up next, a big contest has lined-up for the Japanese fighter. His fourth Australian Open quarterfinal and he would be facing Djokovic of the third consecutive time in the second week of a major tournament. This year, he is confident to win matches with his changed tactics of tennis and probably might avenge his past two recent and consecutive major losses from the six-time champion at Melbourne. Nishikori has won 12 percentage of matches against the Serbian. 

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Mahalakshmi Murali

1907 articles

Mahalakshmi Murali joined EssentiallySports in 2018 as a tennis author and has gone on to pen more than 1800 engaging articles, probing into various aspects of the sport and its illustrious players. With her expertise on the sport, Mahalakshmi has interviewed stalwarts from the sport such as Serena WIlliams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou and Kevin Anderson’s physio, Carlos Costa. Equipped with her vast experience and a keen understanding of the sport, Mahalakshmi now co-heads the tennis department.

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