Nishikori vs Chardy
Semifinal match between Kei Nishikori and Jeremy Chardy in Brisbane.
First of all these two players have a lot of direct matches and the Japanese has the advantage 6:2. The last 5 of them were won by Nishikori. Also three of them were on hard courts in Tokyo, Paris and Australian Open. In all these matches Nishikori lost only one set in tiebreak! That's amazing as stats for me to start thinking about Nishikori's straight sets win, but of course stats are not always enough factor to make a tip.
To say it with fewest words Nishikori is flying on the court in Brisbane. He is like a storm from the baseline, playing with a lot of aggression. His first and second serve percentages were extremely high in his two matches till now in Brisbane. The opponents were not easy at all. Kudla is a hard nut until you break him and Nishikori understood that perfectly well. After 5:5 he finally found a way to do it and then all turned into a one-way traffic. In the QFs he faced Grigor Dimitrov. They made extremely good match, maybe it has to be a match for the big final on Sunday. So long rallies, powerful and aggressive play from the baseline by two players who look like to be in great form. The Japanese won the match 7:5 7:5 showing brutal nerves in the decisive final points of the sets. Infact Grigor was the only one who had a SINGLE break point and used it to take the lead in the 2nd set. For two matches Nishikori had to deal only with ONE break point! You can imagine what's his current form. Two months earlier in the ATP finals maybe most of you remember what happened in his match against Anderson when Nishikori was really himiliated winning only one game during the match. Really don't know what he did during the season break, but he is one of the players to watch in Australian Open for sure. He can reach at least SF if he misses to face Djokovic or Federer in the QFs.
Chardy made a lot of aces in his three matches against Struff, Kyrgios and Uchiyama. He won all of them in three sets, but Struff and Uchiyama are not amongst the players who have to frighten Jeremy. They rely on their big first serves and if they don't enter regularly, you can beat them without much problems. Uchiyama made big match against Jeremy and a final tiebreak decided who will face Nishikori in the SFs. About Kyrgios- I really don't want to comment this player. OK, he had little problems with his right wrist and left foot after a spider bite 10 days ago, but almost everyone on the court has his own little or even much bigger problems. Kyrgios served extremely good in the first set winning it in tiebreak and then he was like a joke.
I don't want to be so negative about Chardy, I like him a lot, he is my favourite player amongst the Frenchmen, but against Nishikori I don't see him to have any chances for success. He will rely on his serve, but still it's not enough. He has to make dozens of aces to have any chance to stay close in the result. I don't see that as very realistic outcome and Pinnacle offers great odds for a straight sets win for Nishikori- 1.66. I looks also at games handicap, but one tiebreak tomorrow can destroy everything, so 2:0 for Nishikori for me!
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Nishikori vs Chardy prediction
|Nishikori -1.5 sets||Pinnacle||1.66||10||2-0 WON (+6.6 units)|