Nishikori Oustlasts Medvedev In Brisbane For First Title In Nearly Three Years

Tennis Clinical Kei Nishikori into Brisbane International final

Kei Nishikori's strong pre-Australian Open form has continued, the Japanese star demolishing world No.40 Jeremy Chardy to reach the Brisbane International final.

And this time previous year, Medvedev was also well down the ranks, at 84, after also playing on the Challenger tour, but he went on to win his first three career titles, and ended 2018 with a tour-leading 38 hard-court wins and a career-high ranking of 16.

The world No.9 won 6-2 6-2 at Pat Rafter Arena on Saturday to set up a decider against Daniil Medvedev as he bids for his first title in nearly three years.

Tsonga made his breakthrough as he levelled the tiebreak at 2-2, going on to win the next five points to seal a straight-sets win.

Nishikori dominated his Russian rival throughout, despite a slight hiccup when one poor service game cost him the second set.

However, Nishikori is renowned for his ability to return serve and play from the baseline, and so it proved here, as he broke back, and then broke again, to claim the first set 6-6.

A quick break helped Nishikori reset as he built a double break, with the insurance coming in handy when broken serving for the title at 5-1.

"Even if I lose today, I think I was very confident, and some of the matches I played one of the best".

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"Great final today, I lost to him past year in the final in Japan, so I'm happy to get revenge today", Nishikori added.

"And he did really well the last game, I mean the 4-3 game".

Next up for Medvedev will be either Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or Alex de Minaur, the only Australian left in the tournament.

"I always start with this tournament and Melbourne, [but I] couldn't make it a year ago".

De Minaur, who announced himself with a semi-final charge in Brisbane 12 months ago, ran and ran in the second set as Tsonga blazed away.

"I was a little bit flat after the first set".

Donna Vekic defeated 2018 finalist Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-2, 6-0 to reach the women's semifinals and will next play fifth-seeded Karolina Pliskova, who beat Ajla Tomljanovic 6-1, 1-6, 6-1.

I played a great match against Dimitrov and today's match was another good tennis.

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