Nishikori Wants To Play The North America Circuit

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Copyright © 2015. No duplication is permitted without permission from Bob Larson Tennis.

Kei Nishikori is hoping for a quick return to success as the Japanese world No. 5 makes his first start since losing in the Wimbledon first round while carrying a lingering thigh injury. The Florida-based US Open finalist will need to get off to a fast start on summer hardcourts as the countdown clock to the last grand slam of the season starts to tick.

Nishikori is testing his fitness at the Washington ATP 500 event where Andy Murray is playing as top seed. Nishikori had to withdraw prior to a Wimbledon second-round date against Santiago Giraldo due to his leg injury, but said this week he is back to fitness.

“I’m feeling well, I had good preparation for two weeks before coming here. After Wimbledon I took one week off and my leg was fine after that. I’m really looking forward to playing here this week.”

Injuries have always been a weak point for Asia’s top player. “It’s not easy but I think in these past couple of years I have a stronger body. I have fewer injuries. In 2008, I had an elbow surgery and that year was tough because I didn’t think I could come back to the Top 100 again.

“My motivation was really low, but I keep believing in myself and doing all the little things and now I’m just very happy to be playing tennis at 100 per cent.”

Nishikori first competed in the American capital in 2007 and will be playing for the fifth time and can put ranking pressure on No. 4 Stan Wawrinka if circumstances work out in his favor this week at the steamy Washington venue.

“It’s tough to play in these conditions with the heat and humidity. There’s a really strong sun here, but I handle it well. It will be helpful to play at night,” he said.

Copyright © 2015. No duplication is permitted without permission from Bob Larson Tennis.