The 25-year-old defeated the Japanese star 6-4, 6-2 after dropping simply 4 factors behind his first supply (25/29). Fritz appeared to step round any ball left in the course of the court docket earlier than crushing a forehand winner, closing the match in a single hour, 13 minutes.
“I am tremendous comfortable how I performed right this moment, getting higher and higher every day I really feel like,” Fritz mentioned in his on-court interview. “A variety of positives I can take into the following match. Kei has been round since I first began. He is an unimaginable participant and an incredible man. I am simply comfortable to see him again taking part in once more, having good outcomes and hitting the ball effectively after being injured for therefore lengthy.”
By the primary 5 video games, neither participant dropped a degree behind their serve. Fritz later took benefit of his lone break level, which doubled as a set level within the tenth sport of the opening set. Because the match wore on, Nishikori didn’t appear at his bodily greatest, utilizing a medical timeout earlier than the second set began for an issue together with his left knee.
It was Fritz’s maiden Lexus ATPHead2Head win in opposition to Nishikori, who had gained the earlier three conferences. Friday was their first encounter since 2019.
Aiming for his second tour-level trophy of the season, World No. 9 Fritz will subsequent meet countryman J.J. Wolf. The eighth seed Wolf, who has not dropped a set all week, cruised previous Dominik Koepfer 6-2, 6-3 within the quarter-finals to set a maiden assembly in opposition to the American No. 1.
The 33-year-old Nishikori was taking part in in his first ATP Tour match since October 2021. A 12-time tour-level titlist, Nishikori underwent arthroscopic left hip surgical procedure in 2022 and returned to competitors final month on the ATP Challenger Tour, instantly successful a title in Puerto Rico.