Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Roger Federer upset by Kei Nishikori at Miami Masters

updated 7:56 AM EDT, Thu March 27, 2014
Roger Federer, left, lost to Kei Nishikori at the Miami Masters after leading by a set and break.
Roger Federer, left, lost to Kei Nishikori at the Miami Masters after leading by a set and break.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Roger Federer loses to Kei Nishikori in three sets at the Miami Masters
  • Federer entered the match in good form, reaching the Indian Wells final
  • Nishikori overcomes the Swiss after playing three hours the previous day
  • Nishikori meets world No. 2 Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the semifinals

Follow us at @WorldSportCNN and like us on Facebook

(CNN) -- Kei Nishikori won a bruising three-hour contest against David Ferrer at the Miami Masters on Tuesday. He had plenty left in the tank when he faced a surging Roger Federer.

He didn't have to save any match points against the Swiss great -- the Japanese No. 1 fended off four of them to oust Ferrer, last year's finalist in Miami -- but Nishikori rallied to beat Federer 36 75 64 under the lights on Stadium court Wednesday.

The 21st-ranked Nishikori has now eliminated Federer twice in a row after upsetting the 32-year-old at the Madrid Masters in three sets last year.

"Feeling good, of course, to beat Roger," Nishikori told the ATP's website. "I thought I really played well, especially in the third. I was hitting both deep and striking well.

"Everything was going well. There (were a) couple of tough moments, but I was fighting through."

Japan's 'rock star' tennis pro
Kei Nishikori: Tokyo's rising tennis ace
Roger Federer: You can't always win

Federer entered the match as the substantial favorite despite the defeat in the Spanish capital, having returned to full fitness and finding his old form after a back injury hindered him for much of 2013.

He reached the final at the Indian Wells Masters earlier this month and there was a real possibility of the 17-time grand slam champion making the Indian Wells and Miami finals in the same year for the first time since claiming both titles in 2006.

"I could never really get my service games going," Federer told the ATP's website. "On the return, as the match went on, I think it was that Kei started to serve a bit better, which made it more difficult."

Nishikori became the first man to break Federer in this year's tournament, perhaps not a surprise since he is second only to Ferrer in percentage of return games won in 2014.

Still, Federer led by a break twice in the second set, only to see Nishikori -- whose career has been interrupted by arm and abdominal injuries -- break immediately back.

The lone break of the third set came in the final game.

"I think Kei does really well controlling the ball," said Federer. "He has great technique, especially on the backhand, very simple, very short back swings, so he does a really nice job of having good timing.

"I predict he's going to be in the top 10 in a short while."

Nishikori next faces Novak Djokovic, who defeated Andy Murray in straight sets.

World No. 1 Rafael Nadal, bidding for a maiden triumph in Miami, plays big-serving Milos Raonic and the in-form Alexandr Dolgopolov encounters Tomas Berdych in the remaining two men's quarterfinals.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:48 AM EDT, Thu September 11, 2014
French Tennis player Rene Lacoste, one of France's 'Four Musketeers' who won the Davis Cup in 1932, at Wimbledon. He is wearing his embroidered crocodile motif. Original Publication: People Disc - HH0434 (Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images)
His distinctive crocodile logo is seen on clothing all over the world, but Rene Lacoste also left a lasting legacy in the development of tennis.
updated 2:36 AM EDT, Tue September 9, 2014
Marin Cilic follows in the footsteps of his coach Goran Ivanicevic by claiming a grand slam crown for Croatia, winning the U.S. Open.
updated 9:34 AM EDT, Sun September 14, 2014
Serena Williams of the US holds the US Open trophy after defeating Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark during their US Open 2014 women's singles finals match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Center September 7, 2014 in New York. AFP PHOTO/Stan HONDA (Photo credit should read STAN HONDA/AFP/Getty Images)
Serena Williams is without peer in the modern women's game and now she is on a par with two American tennis legends from the past.
updated 9:21 AM EDT, Tue September 2, 2014
American tennis player and golfer Althea Gibson (right) receives a kiss from compatriot Darlene Hard, whom she beat in two sets to become the first black woman to win the Women's Singles Finals at Wimbledon.
Over the course of her remarkable life, Althea Gibson was many things to many people -- but it was tennis where she really left her mark.
updated 7:45 AM EDT, Wed August 27, 2014
Canada and tennis? Really? Yup. The North American tennis power balance is swinging away from the States.
updated 8:52 AM EDT, Thu August 21, 2014
As a player he was as fiery as his hair -- and as Novak Djokovic's coach, Boris Becker says he has to battle to keep his emotions in check.
updated 7:02 AM EDT, Wed August 20, 2014
Tennis great Boris Becker says he was stunned by the level of criticism he received after being appointed as Novak Djokovic's coach.
updated 7:01 AM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
"I didn't cry once when I practiced in front of the mirror," says Martin Emmrich. But the nerves kicked in when he got down on one knee on court.
updated 7:35 AM EDT, Mon June 30, 2014
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
updated 9:14 PM EDT, Sun June 22, 2014
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
updated 3:46 AM EDT, Fri May 23, 2014
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
updated 11:55 AM EDT, Tue April 29, 2014
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
ADVERTISEMENT