French Open 2018: Kei Nishikori 'saddened' at World No 84 Nicolas Kicker emerging a match-fixer

Japan's Kei Nishikori said on Sunday that it was 'sad' to see Argentinian Nicolas Kicker found guilty of match-fixing.

AFP May 28, 2018 01:41:28 IST
French Open 2018: Kei Nishikori 'saddened' at World No 84 Nicolas Kicker emerging a match-fixer

Paris: Japan's Kei Nishikori said on Sunday that it was "sad" to see Argentinian Nicolas Kicker found guilty of match-fixing.

Nishikori, who saw off French youngster Maxime Janvier 7-6 (7/0), 6-4, 6-3 in the French Open first round, was due to practice with Kicker at Roland Garros last week.

World number 84 Kicker was found guilty of fixing two matches on the second-tier Challenger Tour in 2015 and could face a lifetime ban.

French Open 2018 Kei Nishikori saddened at World No 84 Nicolas Kicker emerging a matchfixer

File image of Kei Nishikori. Reuters

"Well, yeah, honestly, very sad. Because I think he's good player. He can be a top 50 player," said Nishikori after his win on Sunday.

Kicker reached the third round of the Australian Open in January this year and the also the third round at the Indian Wells Masters.

He was also found guilty of failing to report a corrupt approach and of not co-operating with a Tennis Integrity Unit investigation into the allegations made against him.

"Well, I don't want to say I understand him, but I think some of the players have a tough life from the beginning," added Nishikori.

"I think some people have no money, and you've got to be strong to say no to everything."

Nishikori had to work hard to get past 21-year-old wildcard Janvier, but was always the stronger player on Court One.

The 19th seed said he knew little about his 304th-ranked opponent before the match, so had to change his tactics during the contest.

"He was playing pretty good tennis. I didn't know him, so I checked a little bit, but I kind of had to check in the match.

"He was playing very aggressive. I think I've never seen how aggressive he plays."

Nishikori has risen back up the rankings after a strong clay-court season, which included a final loss to Rafael Nadal in Monte Carlo, having missed the early months of the campaign with a right wrist injury.

The world number 21, who reached the French Open quarter-finals in 2015 and 2017, will next take on either home hope Benoit Paire or Spaniard Roberto Carballes Baena.

Janvier started brightly, with Nishikori having to stave off five break points in the fifth game as the opening set went to a tie-break.

But the former world number four raced through the breaker without dropping a point as Janvier appeared to feel the pressure.

From then on Nishikori was in control, although he did have to save two break points to serve out the second set, before easing through the third.

Updated Date:

also read

Russia's Yana Sizikova released from custody in French Open 2020 match-fixing case
Sports

Russia's Yana Sizikova released from custody in French Open 2020 match-fixing case

The prosecutor's office said Sizikova was arrested for “sports bribery and organized fraud for acts likely to have been committed in September 2020."

French Open 2021: Barbora Krejcikova wins at Roland Garros, dedicates victory to Jana Novotna
Sports

French Open 2021: Barbora Krejcikova wins at Roland Garros, dedicates victory to Jana Novotna

Krejcikova, ranked 33 in the world and playing just her fifth main draw in a Slams singles event, triumphed 6-1, 2-6, 6-4 for a second career title.

French Open 2021: Roger Federer loses cool after feud with chair umpire in win over Marin Cilic
Sports

French Open 2021: Roger Federer loses cool after feud with chair umpire in win over Marin Cilic

Federer, the oldest man in the draw at 39, lost his cool and the set before recovering to defeat former world number three Cilic.