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Kei Nishikori reaches the quarter-finals of the Miami Open presented by Itau on Tuesday.

Nishikori Keeps Title Hopes Alive In Miami

Second seed going for his first Masters 1000 crown

Second seed Kei Nishikori survived a stern challenge from Federico Delbonis on Tuesday, advancing to the fourth round of the Miami Open presented by Itaú with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 victory over the Argentine.

After snatching the second set to level the match, the No. 57-ranked Delbonis, who had upset 15th seed Pablo Carreno Busta in the second round, took an early break lead in the decider. But Nishikori reeled off five of the last six games to prevail in two hours and 14 minutes.

The 27-year-old Nishikori is looking to win his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crown and goes on to face Fabio Fognini for a spot in the last four.

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“I tried to stay calm and focus again,” said Nishikori, reacting to the loss of the second set. “I knew I [still] hde a lot of chances after losing the set. Even though I was down a break, 2-1 [in the third], I was focusing well. I knew if I fight through I will have some chance, so I just tried to concentrate one game at a time.

“I hope I can win some big tournaments sometime soon. I think that's my biggest next goal.”

Fognini had a much smoother route through the fourth round, dismissing American Donald Young 6-0, 6-4 in 66 minutes. The Italian will look to overturn a 0-2 FedEx ATP Head2Head record against Nishikori, who was runner-up in Miami last year (l. to Djokovic).

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