• Nishikori meets Matosevic at U.S. National Indoors

    2/23/13 4:33 AM | Ricky Dimon
    Nishikori meets Matosevic at U.S. National Indoors The only seed remaining in Memphis is Kei Nishikori. He will battle Marinko Matosevic on Saturday for a place in the title match.

    Kei Nishikori and Marinko Matosevic will be going head-to-head for the second time in their careers and for the second time this season when they clash in the semifinals of the U.S. National Indoor Championships on Saturday. Nishikori won their only previous encounter 7-5, 6-2 last month on the hard courts of Brisbane.

    Matosevic does not have home-court advantage this time around, but he has to be playing with a ton of confidence. The 53rd-ranked Australian had won only a single match at an ATP tournament in 2013 prior to this week, but it has all come together for him in Memphis. So far he has taken out Go Soeda, Sam Querrey, and Alexandr Dolgopolov.

    Nishikori is an outstanding 9-2 for the year. The 22nd-ranked Japanese sensation reached the semifinals in Brisbane and the fourth round in Melbourne. He booked his spot in this matchup by defeating Illya Marchenko, Donald Young, and top-seeded Marin Cilic all in straight sets.

    Not only is Nishikori a heavy favorite on paper, but he has also spent far less time on the court in Memphis. Matosevic has battled through consecutive three-setters. This could be relatively competitive if the underdog is serving big on the indoor hard court, but Nishikori in straights is the obvious choice.

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