Number 7 seed Kei Nishikori will face Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the second round on Wednesday, May 29. The timings for this match are yet to be confirmed. You can find the Kei Nishikori v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga live streaming options, preview and predictions here.
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Kei Nishikori v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga Head to Head
Nishikori and Tsonga have met eight times with the Japanese No.1 leading the series 5-3. There only clay-court meeting was at the 2015 French Open when Tsonga overcame Nishikori’s fightback from two sets down to win in five sets.
Nishikori Came Through Unscathed Against Halys
Kei Nishikori has never before made the showpiece final on Parisian dirt, but that has not distracted him from displaying some of his best tennis. The Japanese has made the quarterfinals on two occasions (2015 and 2017).
Having kicked off the 2019 season in the best possible manner by capturing his first title in almost three years in Brisbane, things have been relatively quiet during the last couple of months. However, a semifinal showing in Barcelona and a quarterfinal in Rome seemed to have provided Nishikori with the exact prescription of what the doctor just ordered.
He opened his campaign with a terrific straight sets win over Quentin Halys. The 29-year-old has been notorious of making lightweight draws turn into nightmares in the Grand Slams, but he made sure of no repeat as he posted a 72% winning points on the first serve and winning 99 points in the whole match.
Nishikori will be keen to avenge the loss he suffered at the hands of Tsonga four years ago.
Tsonga Seeking Another Fairytale Run At Home
Former World No.5 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has been another unlucky veteran still feeling the effects of career-threatening knee injury suffered in 2017. The Frenchman – a former Australian Open runner-up – last played at the French Open in that ill-fated campaign two years ago where he lost to Renzo Olivo in the first round.
His return to Paris this year was some sort of retribution as he delivered a very efficient performance to take out Germany’s Peter Gojowczyk in four sets. Tsonga was restricted to play just 12 matches in 2018 after undergoing surgery to his knee. That resulted in his ranking plummeting down to outside the world’s top 250.
He has since turned his fortunes around after making a decent start to the first quarter of 2019. He won his 17th career title in Montpellier in February and made the semifinals in Marrakesh and Brisbane. That form propelled him to break into the Top 100 (currently ranked 82).
Tsonga has made the last four on two occasions in Paris (2013 & 2015), but those days seem like a distant memory when you consider how the landscape of men’s tennis is slowly changing.
Nishikori v Tsonga Predictions & Tips
Nishikori is a massive favorite to win here and rightly so. Despite Tsonga triumphing in their only previous meeting on clay, the Japanese is more agile, fitter and better ball striker than the Frenchman at this point of their careers. 7 of their 8 meetings have been on hard courts where Nishikori is very comfortable on the surface, but that doesn’t put off the good performances the 29-year-old has demonstrated on the dirt. This match-up certainly favorus the man from Japan.
Tip: Nishikori to win in straight sets: 6/5 (888Sport)