Raonic and Nishikori through to Japan Open quarter-finals

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Third seed Milos Raonic (Player Info) put in another convincing display at Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships as he sent home his French opponent Jeremy Chardy (Player Info) in straight sets. As a result of winning 85% of total service points, the highest ranked Canadian was never confronted with a break point threat, whilst he broke the unseeded Frenchman one time in each of the sets to claim his Tokyo quarter-final ticket. He progressed with a comfortable 6-4, 6-3 victory which will see him meet Lukas Lacko (Player Info) for the first time in career in the last 8. The Slovak qualifier also advanced in straight sets, beating  France’s Edouard Roger-Vasselin (Player Info) 7-5, 6-4.

The last quarter-final pair will consist of defending champion Kei Nishikori (Player Info) and Nicolas Almagro (Player Info). The fourth seed Japanese fought a close fight against Spain’s Feliciano Lopez (Player Info) in the opener which he could only put away after the tie-break. The second set was a stroll in the park for the home crowd favorite as he delivered his rival a bagel to enter the quarter-final stage in Tokyo with a 7-6 (4), 6-0 triumph.

Sixth-seeded Almagro’s performance also left little to be desired as he breezed past Argentine Horacio Zeballos (Player Info) by breaking him three times in two sets and capping it off with a final hold to love. He clinched a 6-4, 6-2 victory after around one hour of play on Centre Court. Nishikori prevailed in their only previous face-off in the quarter-finals of Kuala Lumpur 2011.

“I played very well today and I am happy to have the win,” said Almagro. “I think I served very well and am pleased to be through to the next round.”  

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