Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 15th 2015 Contents A49
February 15, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
MEMPHIS, Tennessee---Kei Nishikori of
Japan beat American qualifier Austin
Krajicek 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Friday night
in the quarterfinals of the Memphis
Nishikori, ranked fifth in the world,
shook off eight double-faults and strug-
gled with unforced errors off his back-
hand. But Nishikori improved to 11-1 in
Memphis by beating his friend in their
first career meeting on tour.
"Obviously, I didn t play my best tennis,
but I still won today," Nishikori said.
"That s really important, I think. I won t
play every match my best tennis. I think
it s a very good win today because he was
playing good tennis."
The two-time defending champ will
play Sam Querrey, who upset No3 seed
John Isner 7-6 (3), 7-6 (2), in the semi-
finals Saturday night.
Querrey improved to 3-1 against Isner
in a match decided in the tiebreak
between a pair of big servers. Isner had
12 aces and Querrey 13 with both winning
nearly every point off their first serves.
That left very few ground strokes, and
Querrey said that made finding any
"I m sure a lot of people thought there
were going to be some tiebreakers going
into that," Querrey said. "It was just a
couple points here or there. I got some
stab returns, and that was basically it,
literally just a couple points in each set."
Donald Young needed three sets to beat
Bernard Tomic of Australia 7-6 (8), 4-6,
7-5 earlier Friday. He will play No2 seed
Kevin Anderson of South Africa, a 6-4,
6-4 winner over sixth-seeded Steve John-
Nishikori and Krajicek not only know
each other, they also practice together.
But Krajicek, who upset fifth-seeded Ivo
Karlovic of Croatia on Wednesday, sur-
prised Nishikori with his serve.
"He was hitting a lot of aces that I
wasn t really expecting," Nishikori said.
"But I knew he s been playing great. Beat-
ing Ivo is not easy, so I knew he was going
to be a tough match."
Nishikori broke Krajicek in the eighth
game of the second set and held serve to
even the match.
He broke Krajicek again to open the
third set, but Nishikori fought to hold
serve in the sixth game of the third set
after falling behind 15-40. Krajicek had
four chances to break Nishikori in the
game. Nishikori pushed the game to
deuce, then finally converted on his fourth
game point to go up 4-2.
Krajicek, who came into this week
ranked 156th, broke Nishikori s serve in
the eighth game when Nishikori put a
backhand into the net on break point.
But Nishikori broke right back and served
out for the match, his celebration delayed
momentarily when he lost the grip on his
racket before an overhead winner.
The finish left little to say between the
friends. Krajicek said he was more com-
fortable on the indoor court playing his
"But at the same time, playing a guy
that s (No.) 5 in the world isn t easy no
matter if you know him or not," Krajicek
Young, among five Americans in the
quarterfinals at The Racquet Club, strug-
gled with four double-faults in the second
He bounced back by saving three of
four break points in the third set to
advance to the semifinals in Memphis for
the first time. Young improved to 6-2
With the win, Young reached the fourth
ATP Tour semifinal of his career as he
looks for his first tournament title.
Anderson, in his second semifinal this
year, needed only 65 minutes to defeat
Johnson. The South African served up 16
aces and won 32 of 36 points on his first
Nishikori beats Krajicek in 3
sets to reach Memphis semis
PATTAYA, Thailand---Daniela Han-
tuchova saved two match points
to beat Marina Erakovic of New
Zealand 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3) in the
Thailand Open semifinals yester-
The 31-year-old Slovak is aiming
to become the first player to win
the tournament three times after
victories in 2011 and 2012.
Hantuchova faces Ajla Toml-
janovic in Sunday s final after
the Croat upset seventh-seeded
Monica Puig of Puerto Rico 7-6
(4), 5-7, 7-6 (7) for her first career
Puig was the only seeded player
left in the tournament at Dusit
Hantuchova netted a backhand
slice to drop serve in the fifth game
and lost the opening set after hit-
ting a return long. She won the
second but was in trouble again
after Erakovic used her slices and
persistent baseline game to build a
5-3 lead in the decider.
Hantuchova broke back to trail
5-4 and saved two match points in
the next game before breaking again
to lead 6-5.
Erakovic broke right back to force
a tiebreaker which Hantuchova won
with an ace after wasting her first
match point. (AP)
Hantuchova, Tomljanovic advance to final of Thailand Open
John Isner, of the United States, serves to Sam
Querrey, of the United States, in a quarterfinal at the
Memphis Open tennis tournament on Friday, in
Memphis, Tennessee. AP PHOTO
Sam Querrey, of the United States, returns a shot to John Isner, of the United States, in a
quarterfinal at the Memphis Open tennis tournament on Friday in Memphis, Tenn. AP PHOTO
Kei Nishikori, of Japan, celebrates after defeating Austin Krajicek, of the United States, in
a quarterfinal at the Memphis Open tennis tournament on Friday, in Memphis, Tennessee.
Nishikori won 4-6, 6-3, 6-4. AP PHOTO
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