TOKYO (Reuters) – Russian qualifier Daniil Medvedev stunned home favorite Kei Nishikori in Tokyo on Sunday, winning the final of the Japan Open 6-2 6-4 in just over one hour.
Tennis – Japan Open Men’s Singles finals – Musashino Forest Sport Plaza, Tokyo, Japan – October 7, 2018 Daniil Medvedev of Russia holds his trophy after winning against Kei Nishikori of Japan. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
Medvedev came out of the blocks fast and Nishikori, aiming for his third title at this event, could not cope with the big-hitting Russian who broke his serve at the second time of asking.
After that it was a story of mistakes by world number 12 Nishikori –- 11 unforced errors in the first set – and consistent serving by Medvedev who strolled to a 6-2 first set in just 25 minutes.
Nishikori corrected issues with his own serve in the second set but still could not have an impact on Medvedev’s service games, winning only one point on the Russian’s serve during the entirety of the second set.
Medvedev bided his time and broke a tired Nishikori, whose final shot was another wild miss, to wrap up the victory and secure a third ATP title of the season.
Nishikori has now lost eight ATP finals since his last victory, which came at the Memphis Open in February 2016.
Reporting by Jack Tarrant; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty