Kei Nishikori v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga – Kei’s had some big battles this year, but is this his most important?

Kei Nishikori is no stranger to coming from two sets down at a Grand Slam.

Back in January at the Australian Open in the first round he came from two sets down before winning against Kamil Majchrzak who retired 0-3 down in the 5th set.

In the fourth round that happened again as he fell two sets down to Pablo Carreno Busta and eventually won the 5th set 10-8 on the tiebreaker before retiring down 1-6 1-4 against Novak in the quarter finals.

I heard someone say that they see Nishikori as a ‘dark horse’ for the title however it would have to be a very depleted draw for that to happen.

With respect, Kei is good up to a point and he being a contending isn’t that. He had to retire injured in his quarter final in Melbourne and semi-final in New York over the past 12 months and injuries have always been a problem.

I think we’ve seen his best and I can’t see where a resurgent run would materialise. He hasn’t had a top 10 win yet this season and has lost to their form players on every occasion.

Wawrinka x2
Hurkacz x2

Tsonga will feast off the energy of the crowd and they will be right behind him.

This will be an interesting match-up. Jo was impressive in his opening round match against a potentially tough opponent in Gojowczjk.

This will be the first meeting in 3 years between the two with Kei leading the head to 5-3 and four of their meetings have been in the French capital but only one of them were at Roland Garros in 2015 which was won by Tsonga with the Frenchman winning 6-1 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3 in the quarter finals.

By ranking Kei is the overwhelming favourite with Jo ranked at 82 in the world after a period of injury and he became a father too. He has played well this year with 17 wins and 8 defeats as well as a title.

For me, this is Kei’s biggest match since Melbourne. It just hasn’t happened for him at all this year at a level you’d hope he’d be competing at. I’m interested to see how he gets on but I do think this match will favour Tsonga especially with the home crowd there to.

Screenshot 2019-05-28 at 12.14.28


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