KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia -- Kei Nishikori of Japan reached his seventh quarterfinals of a breakthrough season when he beat Albert Ramos of Spain 6-7 (5), 6-2, 6-1 in the Malaysian Open on Thursday.
The question is: Can he win it? In his six other quarterfinals this year, including at the Australian Open and London Olympics, he lost them all.
On Friday, the third-seeded Nishikori will play Nikolay Davydenko, whom he beat in the London Games.
The second-seeded Juan Monaco began his chase for a fourth title this year by beating Taiwanese wild card Jimmy Wang 6-4, 7-5. The Argentine responded to losing his serve three times by breaking Wang five times.
Alexandr Dolgopolov of Ukraine, the No. 4 seed who also had a first-round bye, lost to Alejandro Falla of Colombia 6-3, 3-6, 6-3.
"I started really bad and missed a lot of balls," Dolgopolov said. "I came back in the second set but it was an up and down match."
Falla's second quarterfinal of the year will be against Julien Benneteau of France.
Dutchman Igor Sijsling served up only his sixth win of the year with a second-round upset of No. 5 Feliciano Lopez of Spain, 7-6 (0), 7-6 (2). They played impeccably on serve with 11 aces each and no break points conceded, but Lopez crumbled in both tiebreaks.
Davydenko, the inaugural Malaysian champion three years ago, defeated Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan 7-5, 6-4 for his second quarterfinals in two weeks.