• Nishikori rolls over Lopez for Memphis title

    2/24/13 11:45 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Nishikori rolls over Lopez for Memphis title Kei Nishikori makes quick work of Feliciano Lopez to capture his second career 500-point title on Sunday in Memphis. It is third title overall for Nishikori.

    The last five months have shown what Kei Nishikori can when armed with a clean bill of health.

    Nishikori, who won a 500-point title in Tokyo last October, captured another at the U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships on Sunday afternoon. Japan's top player cruised past Feliciano Lopez 6-2, 6-3 in a final that lasted just one hour and seven minutes.

    The tone was set right away as Nishikori broke serve in the opening game of the match. The world No. 22 dropped a mere five service points in the first set and dominated all of his service games except for one in which he saved a break point. Nishikori added one more scalp of the Lopez serve before closing things out at 5-2.

    It was all but over when Lopez dropped serve again at 1-1 in set two. The 31-year-old Spaniard had almost no chance when he did not put his first serve in play (three of 19 second-serve points won) and it cost him again the the final game of the tournament. Nishikori delivered a flurry of passing shots at 5-3 to bring up championship point and he clinched the title by forcing Lopez into a backhand error.

    "It was an incredible week for me," assured Lopez, who had not played since the Australian Open due to a knee injury. "To be in the finals after a few weeks without playing, it's a great result. So I have to be pleased for that.... I thought I had a great serve, but today I realized not good enough to play against (Nishikori)."

    "I played amazing today and all this week," Nishikori said. "I guess I love this place. I was healthy to play here. I played really aggressive. Everything worked well today."

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tennisnba , 2/26/13 10:08 AM

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