London - Kei Nishikori dug deep to keep his Wimbledon challenge alive as the Japanese star ground out a 6-4, 6-7 (7/9), 6-1, 7-6 (8/6) win over Ukrainian qualifier Sergiy Stakhovsky on Wednesday.
Despite reaching at least the quarter-finals of the other three Grand Slams, Nishikori has never been past the fourth round at Wimbledon.
The world number nine was pushed hard by Stakhovsky, who famously stunned Roger Federer at Wimbledon three years.
But Nishikori, 27, ignored the searing heat on Court One eventually prevailed in three hours and 15 minutes.
Former US Open finalist Nishikori faces Spanish 18th seed Roberto Bautista Agut in the third round as he aims to make the last 16 for the third time.
Wimbledon results on Wednesday, the third day of the 2017 championships at the All England Club (x denotes seeding):
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA x12) bt Simone Bolelli (ITA) 6-1, 7-5, 6-2
Sam Querrey (USA x24) bt Nikoloz Basilashvili (GEO) 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, 6-3
Gilles Muller (LUX x16) bt Luks Rosol (CZE) 7-5, 6-7 (7/9), 4-6, 6-3, 9-7
Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP x18) bt Peter Gojowczyk (GER) 6-2, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3
Paolo Lorenzi (ITA x32) bt Horacio Zeballos (ARG) 7-6 (7/3), 4-6, 7-6 (10/8), 7-5
Dominika Cibulkova (SVK x8) bt Jennifer Brady (USA) 6-4, 6-4
Ana Konjuh (CRO x27) bt Irina Begu (ROM) 7-6 (7/3), 2-6, 6-3
Maria Sakkari (GRE) bt Kristna Plskov (CZE) 6-7 (6/8), 6-4, 6-4
Victoria Azarenka (BLR) bt Elena Vesnina (RUS x15) 6-3, 6-3
Heather Watson (GBR) bt Anastasija Sevastova (LAT x18) 6-0, 6-4