Australian Open

Nishikori overcomes Berlocq

2013-01-16 07:39
Kei Nishikori (AFP)

Melbourne - Japan's Kei Nishikori wore down Argentina's Carlos Berlocq to reach the third round of the Australian Open on Wednesday.

The 16th seed surged home after being taken to a first set tiebreaker to oust the 68th-ranked Berlocq, 7-6 (7/4), 6-4, 6-1 in 2hr 18min.

Nishikori, flying the flag for the Asian men at the year-opening Grand Slam, dominated with his forehand and court speed as he reeled off 47 winners and six service breaks to take his place in the last 32.

The Japanese star, who reached the quarter-finals of last year's Australian Open in the best ever Grand Slam performance by a Japanese man, had a battle in a 69-minute opening set.

But once he got the initial edge he proceeded to take charge, and grabbed three service breaks in the second set and another two in the final set to win easily.

Nishikori showed no problems with a left knee injury that forced him out this month's Brisbane International and Kooyong Classic tournaments.

He will play either 23rd seed Mikhail Youzhny or another Russian, Evgeny Donskoy, in the next round.

Read more on:    atp tour  |  australian open  |  kei nishikori  |  tennis
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