WATCH: Kei Nishikori Trains Hard for Australian Open 2021 Amid Fitness Concerns

Published 01/03/2021, 2:20 AM EST
Kei Nishikori of Japan playa a backhand his match against Grigor Dimitrov during day five of the 2019 Brisbane International at Pat Rafter Arena in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)


With just about a month to go for the 2021 Australian Open, Kei Nishikori has been training intensely to prepare for the first Grand Slam of the year. Having played a handful of matches during the 2020 season, Nishikori suffered a right shoulder injury at the end of October last year.

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Kei Nishikori training for AO

Recently, the former World No,4 uploaded a gym training video on Twitter. He wrote, “Preparations underway”, and was seen doing jump squats with weights to achieve full fitness before the start of the Australian Open.

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Until a week back, Nishikori was certain to compete at the 2021 Delray Beach Open, which was scheduled to take place from January 7th to 13th. However, Nishikori suddenly withdrew from the tournament a couple of days ago and announced he would kick off his season at the ATP Cup 2021.

As per the guidelines issued by the authorities, players will arrive in Melbourne along with their entourage in mid-January. After arrival, the players will have to quarantine for two weeks, but will be allowed to train five hours each day during the quarantine period.

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Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – Japan’s Kei Nishikori in action during his first round match against Britain’s Dan Evans REUTERS/Christian Hartmann

The warm-up tournaments like ATP Cup and the Adelaide International are scheduled in the first week of February, just before the start of the Australian Open, which begins on February 8. Ever since his debut at Melbourne Park in 2009, Nishikori has never gone past the quarterfinals stage.

The 2014 US Open finalist had a disappointing 2020 season. Nishikori missed the first two months of the season because of an elbow injury and then returned post the tour’s resumption in September. But the Japanese failed to go past the second round in any of the tournaments he entered.

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How far do you think Nishikori will advance in Australia?

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Kshitij Tayal

395 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

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