Kei Nishikori of Japan, seeded five, will play Dasun Lajovic of Serbia in the second round of the ATP Miami Masters on Friday 22 March. The match is scheduled for 12 noon local time (4 pm BST) and you can find the Kei Nishikori v Dasun Lajovic live streaming options here.
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Kei Nishikori v Dasun Lajovic Head to Head
The two have met twice before, both times on hard courts, with Nishikori winning in straight sets on each occasion. Their first meeting came in the Australian Open in 2014, followed by an encounter on the indoor courts of Basel two years later.
Nishikori in Need to Rediscover Winning Touch
Having started the year well by winning the title in Brisbane, getting through to the quarter-finals in Melbourne, and then the semis in Rotterdam, Nishikori’s form has deserted him recently. In the last two tournements he has contested, in Dubai and Indian Wells, he came up against the same player on each occasion, Hubert Hurkacz of Poland, and, on each occasion, he was found wanting.
In particular, he will have been analyisng how he appeared to be in control of his match against the Pole in California, manipulating him around the court, but still could not put him away. He will also need to serve much better in Florida than he did in the desert.
A good start and a decent momentum into the latter rounds could be the key to Nishikori’s performance in the tournament.
Lajovic to Take Encouragement from Cuevas Win
This is the sixth time that Lajovic has played in Miami, and he does not have a good record in the tournament, with a number of first round losses behind him, including last year when he fell at the first hurdle to Horacio Zeballos.
He may have been worried that a repeat was on the cards on Thursday when his opponent Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay saved two match points to force their first round tie into a deciding set.
However, he found the break of service that he needed in the third, and held his nerve to book his place in the second round, and the meeting with Nishikori. He will be hoping that the win will help him rediscover the form that made him a quarter-finalist in Doha at the start of the year.
Nishikori v Lajovic Predictions & Tips
Nishikori will start odds-on favourite for the match at 3/13, with Lajovic very much the outsider at 4/1 (bet365) . The Japanese man has been out of sorts of late, but Lajovic is just the sort of opponent he should beat and regain some form in the process.
Tip: Nishikori to win in straight sets: 8/13 (Betfair)
You can watch & bet on Kei Nishikori v Dasun Lajovic, at 4 pm BST (12 noon local time) today here .