Rising American star Sebastian Korda claimed there were no secrets beween him and Kei Nishikori and he was happy that he managed to be mentally stronger in key moments of the match. Korda, ranked at No. 52 in the world, beat former world No.
4 Nishikori in three sets 2-6 6-3 7-5 to reach the Halle quarterfinal. “We know each other’s games so well, and he has watched me play since I started playing tennis, so there were definitely no secrets during our match,” Korda said.
“It was just a mental battle and I stayed really calm in the big moments, saving lots of break points, and then I managed to win one at 5-5 and serve it out”. “It has been super fun this week. It is pretty close to where I usually practice in Europe, so we drove over from Prague, and it has such a homely feel here, so it has been an honour,” Korda added.
Nishikori was happy with his performance despite the loss
After losing the opening game of the match, Nishikori claimed back-to-back breaks and took a 5-1 lead. Korda stopped Nishikori's run in the seventh game but the Japanese served out for the opener in the eighth game.
Korda earned his first break of the match in the sixth game of the second set, before serving out for a decider in the ninth game. In the third set, Korda claimed the lone break of the set in the 11th game. “I would say it was a good level from both of us,” Nishikori said.
“I think I played almost too good in the first set. He then started making more balls and changed his position and started playing better in the second, and I think the third set could go both ways. I had many chances, but he played good points and he deserved to win as he took risks”.