Nishikori on track for Memphis Open defence

Kei Nishikori is on track to defend his Memphis Open title after breezing into the semi-finals after just over 90 minutes on the court.


The number one seed secured a 6-2 6-4 victory over Kazak Mikhail Kukushkin.

Nishikori won 74 per cent of points on his first serve and hit seven aces as he put in a dominant performance to keep his title defence alive.

Kukushkin’s second serve lacked the required stopping power to put Nishikori on the back foot, as the victor went on to win 63 per cent of points on his opponent’s second serve.

The Japanese star faced five break points and saved them all as he broke his opponent four times throughout the match.

He moves into the semi-finals where fourth seed American Sam Querry awaits, who triumphed 6-3 6-4 against Nishikori’s compatriot Yoshihito Nishioka.

The world number 58 put in a strong performance, smashing 11 aces on the way to victory as he won 76 per cent of points on his first serve.

In the other side of the draw, third seed Donald Young was a shock exit as he fell to unseeded Ricardas Berankis 7-6 (7-3) 6-1.

The American’s serve was not up to scratch as Berankis won 70 per cent of points on return.

Berankis will take on wildcard Taylor Fritz, who prevailed in a three-set match against Benjamin Becker 6-4 5-7 7-6 (7-5).

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