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The world No. 9 won 6-2 6-2 at Pat Rafter Arena on Saturday to set up a decider against Daniil Medvedev or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga as he bids for his first title in nearly three years.

Nishikori last won a title in February 2016, with a loss in Tokyo to Medvedev last year and another final loss in Brisbane two years ago particularly frustrating for the favourite.

By and large, the final was an extension of the rock-solid tennis he produced all week as he won 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 and was for once the man making the winner's speech, not politely applauding as the gallant loser.

After easing through the opening set in 26 minutes, Pliskova appeared to switch off as world number 46 Tomljanovic switched gears to win five games without reply before levelling the contest at one set apiece.

However, Nishikori is renowned for his ability to return serve and play from the baseline, and so it proved here, as he broke back, and then broke again, to claim the first set 6-6.

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Pliskova was jolted back to life in the decider and showed the poise that has accompanied her rise up the rankings, as the world number eight raced to a 5-0 lead before sealing victory. I felt like I was too fast on the court today ...

Next up for Medvedev will be either Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or Alex de Minaur, the only Australian left in the tournament.

"Maybe first match [against Denis Kudla] was a little bit tight, but after Dimi's [Grigor Dimitrov] match and today's match was nearly flawless, I would say".

"And he did really well the last game, I mean the 4-3 game".

"I think we need him on tour".

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Medvedev withstood the huge serving of Canadian Milos Raonic to win a brutal match 6-7 (2/7), 6-3, 6-4.

"If I'm being really frank, I just feel like I had like the worst attitude today", the 21-year-old Osaka said.

In the women's tournament Karolina Pliskova recovered to blaze past Ajla Tomljanovic 6-1 1-6 6-1 and into the Brisbane International semi-finals.

"I think he was missing a little bit more than last couple matches".

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