Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 9th 2015 Contents A55
August 9, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
rallied to beat Marin Cilic 3-
6, 6-1, 6-4 yesterday in the
Citi Open semifinals in their
first showdown since Cilic
beat Nishikori in the US Open
final exactly 11 months ago.
The second-seeded Nishikori
raced to a 5-0 lead in the sec-
ond set. The Japanese player
broke the Croatian s serve at
5-4 in the third immediately
after the No 3 seed broke
Nishikori s serve to even the
set.Nishikori, the first Japanese
man to reach a Grand Slam
final, improved to 42-9 this
season. Only Novak Djokovic
and Andy Murray have won
more ATP this matches this
year, with 48 apiece.
John Isner faced Steve John-
son in an all-American match
in the second semifinal.
The first Grand Slam final
appearance for either Nishikori
or Cilic occurred September 8,
2014, in New York. Cilic won
the match 6-3, 6-3, 6-3. He
appeared headed for a similar
result in the rematch.
The third seed did not drop
a set in his first three matches
in Washington. That streak
continued initially as he broke
Nishikori s first service game
and comfortably won the first
set with one of his nine aces
on set point. Things turned
immediately turned rocky from
there even though Nishikori
received assistance from a
trainer for left leg tightness
during the second set.
He won eight of the next
nine games, including a break
of Cilic s serve to open the third
set.Nishikori s potent two-
handed backhand held up, but
his serve faltered at times late
in the match, forcing the 5-
foot-10 baseliner to grind out
a win against the 6-foot-6
Cilic. He double faulted twice
in the eighth game as Cilic tied
the match 4-4, but with the
crowd cheering him on, the
fifth ranked player in the world
quickly countered. He broke
Cilic for the fourth time and
then served out the match to
reach his fourth final of the
Nishikori lost his only pre-
vious match against Isner, but
is 3-0 lifetime against Johnson.
Makarova will face Anastasia
Pavlyuchenkova in semifinal
matchup in the women s draw.
The winner will meet American
Sloane Stephens or 2011 US
Open champion Samantha Sto-
sur in the final. (AP)
Nishikori tops Cilic in
US Open final rematch
KITZBUEHEL---Philipp Kohlschreiber won his sixth
career ATP title by rallying to defeat French qualifier
Paul-Henri Mathieu 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 at the Generali
It was the first title in 15 months for the sixth-
seeded German, who improved to 6-7 in finals.
"Winning here is very special for me," said
Kohlschreiber, who lives in Kitzbuehel. "That s the
crazy thing about tennis. I ve been working hard this
season but lost many close matches that hurt me.
But now I am super happy."
Overcoming a slow start, the 39th-ranked
Kohlschreiber dropped just three points on serve in
the second set and used two more breaks to win the
last four games of the final set.
"I wasn t loose enough and played too many short
balls in the first set," Kohlschreiber said. "I managed
an early break in the second set, and that helped me
to find my rhythm."
Coming back from injuries, the 109th-ranked
Mathieu was looking for his first title in eight years
and fifth overall. He hasn t beaten Kohlschreiber
Mathieu last won a tournament in Gstaad in 2007.
Formerly ranked 12th, he suffered from injuries and
missed the entire 2011 season with left knee prob-
"It s great to be back in a final," the Frenchman
said. "It has been so long."
Mathieu s defeat left Rajeev Ram the only player
from outside the top 100 to win a title this season.
The 161th-ranked American won in Newport in July.
The Generali Open was the final clay-court tour-
nament of the season. (AP)
to win title
Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber poses with the
trophy after winning the final match against
France's Paul-Henri Mathieu at the Generali Open
tennis tournament in Kitzbuehel, Austria, yesterday.
Kohlschreiber won with 2-6, 6-2, 6-2. AP PHOTO
va advanced to her WTA Tour-
best fifth final of the year,
beating American Varvara
Lepchenko 6-2, 7-5 yesterday
in the Bank of the West Clas-
sic.The fourth-seeded Pliskova,
from the Czech Republic,
recorded her 39th victory of
the season, one shy of leader
Serena Williams. Pliskova will
make her top-10 debut when
the rankings are released Mon-
"This is the best match I ve
played here so far," Pliskova
said. "I can still play better. I
can change a few things. But I
have found some level where I
can play. I ve improved a lot
mentally, and I m going for
every shot." In her previous four
finals appearances this year,
Pliskova won in Prague and lost
in Sydney, Dubai and Birming-
Pliskova averaged 105 mph
on her first serve and had five
aces en route to winning 81 per-
cent of her first-serve points.
"My serve is solid now," she
said. "She was struggling with
the return. I m happy I closed
it out in two sets. This couldn t
be a better start to the hard-
court season, and I hope I can
build off this."
Lepchenko, who knocked off
top seed Carolina Wozniacki in
the second round, committed
50 errors--- 24 of them
Angelique Kerber of Germany
faced eighth-seeded Elina Svi-
tolina of Ukraine in the second
Pliskova beats Lepchenko to reach Stanford final
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