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March 27, 2017 7:48

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14:42 18 March 2017

Tennis: Nishikori loses in BNP Paribas Open q'finals

INDIAN WELLS, California, March 17, Kyodo

No. 4 seed Kei Nishikori lost to 17th-seeded American Jack Sock in three sets Friday in the men's singles quarterfinals of the BNP Paribas Open tennis tournament.

Japan's ace, ranked fifth in the world, allowed 18th-ranked Sock to break his serve twice in the third set and could not find his form throughout the match, going down 6-3, 2-6, 6-2.

"He mixed in kick serves and fast serves, and due also to effects of the wind I made mistakes on my returns," the 27-year-old Nishikori said. "I was in good condition in this tournament but ended on a bad note."

Up-and-coming Sock, 24, who has won two titles this season and is now 2-1 against Nishikori, powered his way to win the first set.

The Japanese then took advantage of his opponent's errors to grab the second set, but failed to get into gear in the final set.

"He served well," said Nishikori, who has never advanced to the semifinals of the BNP Paribas Open. "I made even more mistakes in the third set and couldn't play good tennis."

Nishikori, who is aiming for his first title at a Masters tournament, is scheduled to play in the Miami Open starting next week in Florida.

==Kyodo

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