ATP: Japan's Kei Nishikori replaces Nadal in Top 5By / 2017.04.18
The Japanese tennis star Kei Nishikori climbed two spots to replace Rafael Nadal in the 5th position of ATP ranking released Monday. While Nadal slipped to 7th position.
In the ATP ranking released Monday April 17, as reported by Shanghai Daily, Andy Murray still hold the number one position. The British tennis player is closely followed by the Serbian Novak Djokovic at the 2nd place. Two Switzerland's players ranked third and fourth place Stan Wawrinka and Roger Federer.
Nadal and Nishikori's last match was during the Barcelona Open BancSabadell in April last year. Nadal defeated the two-time defending champion Nishikori in a very close game 6-4 and 7-5 ,as both players are equally excellent players in the clay-court.
Despite his winning, Nadal lost his his points in the in the ATP ranking and switched place, according to Tennis World. While Milos Raonic stayed at 6th place. In the recent ranking, two players Borna Coric and Ernesto Escobedo are two players who make the significant climb on the list in the Top 100.
Nishikori is a player who operates mostly from the baseline. He is known to have an excellent groundstroke that is able to push his opponent with a flat backhand and accurate Western forehand. Since January 2014, the 27-year-old player is coached by Michael Chang, who was known to be one of the best defensive baseliners.
Chang's style has improved Nishikori's baseline very much. Nishikori's coach has influenced him to develop a habit to take the ball earlier to drive the opponent. Combined with his unique groundstroke of a short backswing, he is able to deliver a powerful and accurate ball to his opponent. Furthermore, he often hits the ball at its peak, making it difficult for his opponent to predict the direction of the ball.
In this year's first grand slam, Australian Open last January, Nishikori reached the fourth round, before Federer defeated him in five sets 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 6-1 4-6 6-3 and advancing to quarter finals. Watch the interview with Nishikori during the Australia Open below: