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Ferrer To Meet Nishikori In Fourth Round After Win Over Baghdatis

Melbourne, Australia

Nishikori© Getty ImagesKei Nishikori reached hte fourth round for the second successive year.

Fourth seed David Ferrer, who lifted his 19th ATP World Tour trophy at the Heineken Open in Auckland last week, maintained his early season form with a 6-4, 6-2, 6-3 win over No. 28 Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus at the Australian Open on Friday night.

“Tonight, it was my best match of the week,” said Ferrer. “I'm very happy to win in three sets against Marcos. It is difficult.”

Ferrer will next look to reverse a 1-2 FedEx ATP Head2Head record against World No. 18 Kei Nishikori, who beat the Spaniard at the London 2012 Olympics. 

“It's a very difficult match,” said Ferrer. “I will have to play very well for to beat him. I will have to play similar to tonight – consistent, solid. It’s going to be a very physical match, because he has very good shots.”

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Earlier in the day, Nishikori booked a place in the fourth round for the second year in a row, when he eased past Evgeny Donskoy 7-6(3), 6-2, 6-3.

“I think I played well in important games,” said Nishikori, who reached the 2012 quarter-finals. “It wasn't easy to play today with the wind. [In] the last couple games, I played really well and [was] more confident in my play. So I think I'm in good shape.”

Nishikori finished 2012 inside the Top 20 of the Emirates ATP Rankings for the first time, highlighted by winning his home event at the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships in Tokyo (d. Raonic).

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