WIMBLEDON, England – Kei Nishikori became the first Japanese man in 17 years to reach the third round of Wimbledon by beating Florent Serra 6-3, 7-5, 6-2 on Thursday.
The 19th-seeded Nishikori had 45 winners to break Serra eight times and wrap up the win in 1 hour, 45 minutes on Court 17.
The last Japanese man to reach the round of 32 at Wimbledon was Shuzo Matsuoka in 1995. Nishikori said he trained with Matsuoka as a kid and still keeps in touch with him regularly. He said Matsuoka sent him an email after Thursday's match, and that "he's always helping me."
Nishikori won his only ATP tour title in 2008 in Delray Beach but made two finals last year, including in Basel where he lost to Roger Federer.