Kei Nishikori has admitted that he needs to adjust his tactics when he takes on world number one Novak Djokovic in the semi-final of the Madrid Open on Saturday.
World number six Nishikori booked his place in the last four in the Spanish capital with a classy win 6-7 (8-6), 7-6 (7-1), 6-3 over Nick Kyrgios.
Djokovic, meanwhile, beat Canada’s big-serving Milos Raonic 6-3, 6-4 and will be the big favourite against the Japanese player whom he has beaten in their last six matches.
“He has beaten me comprehensively in our recent matches so I want to rethink my tactics,” Nishikori told the ATP Tour after his win on Friday.
During his victory over the Australian number one, the 26-year-old Japanese ace struggled to cope with Kyrgios’ aggressive play at times, but got gradually got into the match more.
“I thought it was a great match,” added. “I think he served really well. Even though I had many opportunities in the first and second sets — many break points, I couldn’t convert.
“If I could play better on those important points maybe I could finish (the match in) two sets. It was two tough tie-breaks, but I tried to play maybe a little more aggressive in second set.
“I thought I returned better in the third set. I was seeing his serve a little better. It was a really tough match, so I am very happy to win today.”