• Lopez overcomes Berankis, Nishikori to face Nadal

    3/25/11 5:32 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Lopez overcomes Berankis, Nishikori to face Nadal Kei Nishikori beats Jeremy Chardy in straight sets on Thursday to set up a second-round Miami meeting with Rafael Nadal. Feliciano Lopez also advances, taking out Richard Berankis in three.

    Kei Nishikori d. Jeremy Chardy 7-6(5), 6-2

    Nishikori capitalized on an error-fest from Chardy and advanced to the second round of the Sony Ericsson Open after one hour and 35 minutes on Thursday afternoon. Chardy, who is now 0-6 in ATP tournaments this season, at least manged to be competitive in the first set by saving all three of the break points he faced. Nishikori, though, gained control of the match by taking the tiebreaker seven points to five.

    Set two saw Chardy completely disappear. The 49th-ranked Frenchman dropped serve twice and tossed in seven of his ridiculous 11 double-faults. He finished with 44 errors to Nishikori's 13 as the Japanese star ran away with the match. Nishikori wrapped up his effort with three aces and one double-fault while serving at 78 percent. The world No. 62 is set for a second-round showdown against top-seeded Rafael Nadal.

    Feliciano Lopez d. Richard Berankis 4-6, 7-6(5), 6-3

    Lopez came back from a set down and a 3-0 deficit in the third to beat Berankis after two hours and 26 minutes of play on Thursday. It was Berankis who got off to a fast start before a minor back problem proved to be his downfall. The Lithuanian saved all five of the break points he faced in set one and survived a tough game at 5-4 to serve it out.

    The tide turned in the second, in which Lopez fired 10 of his 19 aces. After forcing a tiebreaker, the 41st-ranked Spaniard pulled it out seven points to five. Although hobbled, Berankis took a surprising early lead in the final frame of play, but it only delayed the inevitable. Lopez rolled through the last six games of the match and his third break of the day (all in the third set) ended the proceedings in style. Next up for Lopez is No. 26 seed Juan Ignacio Chela.

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Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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