Nishikori confident of Djokovic scalp
Kei Nishikori enters tomorrow morning's (Singapore time) Miami Open final confident he can break a five-match losing streak against top-ranked Novak Djokovic and dethrone the two-time defending champion.
The 26-year-old Japanese sixth seed (right) has dropped six of eight meetings with Djokovic, who will try to match Andre Agassi's career record with a sixth Miami crown.
But Nishikori has been impressive on the Florida hardcourts, saving five match-points to subdue French 16th seed Gael Monfils in the quarter-finals and dispatching other opponents in straight sets, including beating Australian 20-year-old Nick Kyrgios 6-3, 7-5 in the semi-finals yesterday morning.
"I've been playing well. I'm not surprised I'm in the final," Nishikori said. "If I can maintain this, I can win the title."
Nishikori, who won his fourth consecutive Memphis title in February, has reached only his second ATP Masters final, the other coming in 2014 at Madrid.
"He does look very composed on the court, so I don't think he's going to feel any much different because we've played against each other so many times," Djokovic, who downed Belgian 15th seed David Goffin 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 yesterday, said of the Japanese.
Djokovic, who would own all four Grand Slam crowns if he wins the French Open final in June, has reached five of the past six US Open finals, but he was denied in 2014 when Nishikori beat him in a semi-final before falling to Marin Cilic in the final.
"He is somebody who has been around and played so many matches on the big stage," Djokovic said of Nishikori. "I don't see him being too overwhelmed or nervous." - AFP.