Anderson tops Nishikori in Vienna Open final, secures ATP Finals berth

Naomi Osaka's win over Serena Williams was epic says Kei Nishikori

Kei Nishikori offered another solid performance and remained on course to lift the title as he beat Mikhail Kukushkin 6-4 6-3 to reach his 12th career final at ATP 500-level at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna.

The Spaniard broke Anderson twice in the second but didn't get another chance on the South African's serve in the final set.

Anderson, with only four ATP World Tour 250 championships to his name, would qualify for the ATP Finals by capturing the Vienna title.

Nishikori was unable to find a way back in the first set and was consigned to defeat after Anderson's serve and forehand proved to be potent in a second-set tie-break, a 13th ace sealing the title.

The second semi-final was a much closer affair with Anderson edging out Fernando Verdasco 6-3 3-6 6-4.

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Anderson joins Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Juan Martin del Potro, Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev in qualifying for the elite event, with the final two places to be decided at this week's Paris Masters. I think it's one of our biggest tournaments of the year, really celebrates the Top 8 players of the year. "You've been a world-class player year-in and year-out so best of luck for the rest of the year".

Anderson has a shot at a fifth career title and second of the year after winning in NY in February.

The 32-year-old, who also defeated Nishikori en route to winning the inaugural New York Open in February, improved to 3-4 in his head-to-head series against the Japanese star. Each of the World No. 8's previous trophy wins - in Johannesburg, Delray Beach, Winston-Salem and NY - came at ATP World Tour 250-level events.

Anderson, after multiple errors on his backhand side when serving for the set, kept faith in the groundstroke and soon converted his third set point with another driven backhand to force an error from his opponent.

Anderson, who also won in NY in February and reached the final at Wimbledon, earned a fifth career title but first at a higher-level ATP 500 event.

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