Nishikori, Cilic advance to Swiss Indoors final
ABS-CBN Sports on Oct 30, 2016 06:54 AM
FILE - Nishikori, the No. 5-ranked Japanese, faced an upset loss to the 37th-ranked Muller, a left-hander from Luxembourg, when trailing 4-5, 30-40 in the second set (AP Photo).BASEL, Switzerland (AP) — Kei Nishikori saved a match point with a perfect topspin lob and fought back to beat Gilles Muller 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-3 in the Swiss Indoors semifinals on Saturday.
Fourth-seeded Marin Cilic also trailed by a set before winning 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 against qualifier Mischa Zverev of Germany.
The title match on Sunday is a repeat of the 2014 U.S. Open final which Cilic won in three straight sets.
Nishikori, the No. 5-ranked Japanese, faced an upset loss to the 37th-ranked Muller, a left-hander from Luxembourg, when trailing 4-5, 30-40 in the second set.
Nishikori went behind the baseline to retrieve Muller's backhand volley approach shot and lifted a forehand lob.
"My arm was shaking, it was match point for him," said Nishikori, who saved a second match point soon after.
The third-seeded Nishikori dominated the second-set tiebreaker and completed the win in 2 hours, 15 minutes.
Nishikori, who lost the 2011 Basel title match to Roger Federer, is seeking his second title of a season which has brought a career-best 56 wins.
Cilic lifted himself into the eighth and last qualifying spot for the ATP Tour Finals next month by reaching the Basel final.
The 12th-ranked Croat dropped serve for the first time this week in losing the opening set to Zverev, who ousted U.S. Open champion Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland in a long quarterfinal on Friday.
In the second set, Cilic saved three break points for Zverev when serving at 4-4, then took his first break chance of the match to clinch the set.