METZ, September 22, 2018
Matthias Bachinger has reached his first final on the ATP World Tour. The 31-year-old German upset the top seed of the Moselle Open, Kei Nishikori, 2-6, 6-4, 7-5 on Saturday afternoon.
Bachinger, who battled through the qualifying in Metz, showed an impressive performance in his only third semi-final appearance. After a slow start, the World No. 166 ralllied from a set down to overcome Nishikori after two hours and 10 minutes.
Bachinger fired 13 aces and broke his opponent two times to celebrate his first victory over the World No. 12 in the pair’s third meeting.
“This has been my biggest success in my career. Kei is such a great player. I was a bit tired from yesterday but he also played really well in the opening set. I kept fighting and I was able to hold my serve in the following and capitalized on my own break point chances. I tried to stay aggressive on the court, which was key,” Bachinger said.
“Conditions here suit my game of playing, as the balls don’t bounce that high. I had a good feeling right from the beginning of the week, however, I didn’t expect to reach the final. I am very happy.”
Nishikori admits defeat
Nishikori seemed to be surprised by the performance from the German: “I played a great first set but Matthias changed a little bit in the following and became better. I didn’t play my best but his level of play in the second set was amazing.
“He hits very flat and it’s not easy to play against him in these conditions. I think that he can be very dangerous this week,” Nishikori stated and also admitted to feel tired after his run to the semi-finals at the US Open. “Now I will take some rest and then go to Asia.”
Bachinger will face local favourite Gilles Simon in Sunday’s singles title match. The 33-year-old Frenchman eased past Radu Albot from Moldova 6-3, 6-1 earlier in the day.
Simon won both previous meeting with Bachinger. Their last match took place in the semi-finals of the ATP-event in Bucharest six years ago.