MEMPHIS (AP) — Top-seeded Marin Cilic lost in straight sets to Kei Nishikori of Japan in the quarterfinals Friday of the U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships.
Cilic was going for back-to-back ATP World Tour titles before the 6-2, 6-2 loss to the fifth-seeded Nishikori. Cilic claimed his ninth career title two weeks ago in Zagreb, Croatia, and had won nine of 11 matches this year.
Australia’s Marinko Matosevic also advanced, rallying for a 6-7(6), 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 7 seed Alexandr Dolgopolov.
Cilic’s loss left the tournament without any of its top four seeds in the semifinals. No. 2 seed Milos Raonic, third-seeded John Isner and fourth-seeded Sam Querrey were eliminated by the second round.
Nishikori reached his second semifinal of the year. He reached the same round in Brisbane.
“It was a perfect match for me,” Nishikori said. “Everything went well, my serves and my groundstrokes.”
Nishikori played nearly flawless tennis after breaking Cilic to go up 3-2 in the first set. He broke Cilic twice in the second set to take a 4-1 lead and did not face a break point. Nishikori smashed a forehand winner on match point.