Brandon Nakashima Soars By means of In Tokyo | ATP Tour

Contemporary off clinching his first ATP Tour title final month in San Diego, Brandon Nakashima continued his profitable methods on Monday in his debut on the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships.

The American, whose father is of Japanese descent, defeated Japanese wild card Shintaro Mochizuki 6-3, 6-2 within the first spherical on the Tokyo ATP 500 occasion.

“It is my first time in Japan so I am nonetheless studying so much about it, however it’s very thrilling. It is lovely to date,” Nakashima mentioned in his post-match interview. “My dad’s aspect of the household is Japanese. That is the place I get my final identify from. Any time I get to be taught extra about my background I am tremendous excited, so I am joyful to be right here.

“The environment is admittedly superb. I really feel proper at dwelling.”

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The 19-year-old Mochizuki made a powerful begin in his Tokyo debut, searching for his first tour-level win, however Nakashima pulled away by profitable 9 of the ultimate 11 video games from 3-3 within the opening set. Nakashima didn’t face a break level within the contest and received 84 per cent (21/25) of his first-serve factors.

“Any time I am serving nicely, it impacts all the opposite components of my recreation,” mentioned Nakashima. “I am joyful that I served nicely in the present day.”

The 21-year-old is stuffed with confidence after his San Diego triumph, and was happy with how his recreation translated to the Tokyo situations.

“It was positively one in every of my objectives originally of the yr, to win my first ATP title,” he mentioned. “To do it in my hometown was tremendous particular.

“Coming right here, it is fairly distant from the place I final performed and I am nonetheless sort of getting used to the situations out right here and every thing. However I am proud of my degree in the present day and hopefully I will be capable of have a extremely good week right here.”

Nakashima will face both ninth seed Borna Coric or Aussie Thanasi Kokkinakis within the second spherical, with the pair set to fulfill on Tuesday afternoon.

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Mochizuki, who was taking part in in his sixth tour-level match general and his third ATP Tour occasion of 2022, loved the expertise in entrance of his dwelling crowd regardless of the defeat.

“The final match I performed in Japan was after I was 12 or 13, so it has been 5 or 6 years since I performed right here. It was very good,” he mentioned.

“It is superb that lots of people are supporting me. I do not expertise that fairly often with my degree now, so clearly it is unbelievable and I actually need to play subsequent yr once more… Off-court it is very comfy staying in Japan. I do know every thing. I like Japanese meals.”

In Monday’s opening match, Pedro Martinez downed Alexei Popyrin 7-5, 6-4. With the victory, the Spaniard snapped an eight-match shedding streak throughout all ranges, together with six tour-level defeats. He awaits the winner of high seed Casper Ruud‘s Tuesday assembly with Jaume Munar.

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