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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Kei Nishikori is the new champion of the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell. The Asian No. 1 became the first man from his country to lift the trophy in the Catalan capital and is "surprised about the win because Japanese players are usually not good on clay."

Nishikori’s first time playing on clay was when he was around 12-13 years old. "I was good on clay when I was little, I was winning the juniors in Europe."

As first non-Spanish champion in 12 years, Nishikori sympathized with the local fans saying that he "felt a little bad for no Spaniard in the final, but I am still very happy about my win." Argentine Gastón Gaudio was the last international star to claim the Barcelona crown in 2004.

About his own expectations prior to the tournament, he felt confident having played a good season leading up to Barcelona. "Of course I was trying to (win), but maybe I wasn’t expecting it."

"This is a great feeling. I really appreciate this title. I love Barcelona and will stay for a couple of days longer to be with my friends eat a good paella,” added Nishikori, who is “feeling physically and mentally fine."

On his future goals the newly crowned champion says: "My next goal is to get to the top 10. This title and Miami has helped my confidence." Nishikori reached the semi-finals at the Masters 1000 event in Miami, defeating David Ferrer and Roger Federer.

Seeing how strong the 24-year old looked on the court this Sunday raised new expectations for the Japanese player’s future "I have to work on a lot of things to win a Grand Slam, but hopefully I will some day."

His coaching staff, formed by Michael Chang and Dante Bottini, helped Nishikori to prepare well for the European clay season. "Over the past three years, Dante made me get to the next level. Both coaches are doing a great job. I was already playing good on clay last year , but Michael knows what I need to work on to improve."


Nishikori, who is the first player of his country to win the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell, earned €422,100 in prize money and 500 Emirates ATP Rankings points, ascending five spots to No. 12 in the world, one shy of his career-high ranking. Giraldo takes home €192,450 and 300 Emirates ATP Rankings points for his efforts.

http://www.barcelonaopenbancsabadell.com/en/news/nishikori-great-feeling



 

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samurai :hearts: please have some more performance like these this season too! miami and barcelona were impressive indeed
 

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:worship:
 

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Kei is really the future. Has class, (real) humbleness, a real non-shanky backhand, and ability on all surfaces.
 

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Hypo, I see you crawled into my cave and took the shank backhand line. Go back to Djoker forum where you belong. Nyuknyuknyuk
 

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Good shit :yeah:
 
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