Kei Nishikori vs Tomas Berdych
Berdych and Nishikori have not faced each other competitively for three years.Getty Images

Tomas Berdych and Kei Nishikori look to keep their hopes alive at the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in London.

Where to watch

Berdych vs Nishikori is live on Sky Sports 3HD, BBC Two HD and BBC Radio Five Live sports extra from 2pm.

Preview

Barely two days into the singles competition at the ATP World Tour Finals and already players are fighting for their lives at the final tournament of the year. Both defeated in straight sets in their opening matches against Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, Tomas Berdych and Kei Nishikori know only a win will do on day three.

Of the two players, it was Berdych who produced the more encouraging performance in his opening round robin defeat. Federer's "worst start in years" was in part down the Czech's serving and groundstroke power which once it relented allowed the 17-time major champion to pull away.

Contrastingly, Nishikori was a mere bystander as he was swatted aside by world number one Djokovic in convincing fashion. The Japan player reached the semi-final last year and even took a set off the Serbian in the knock-out phase, but he barely featured in his first outing in the English capital.

Tomas Berdych
Berdych took a nasty fall in defeat to Federer but is fit to face Nishikori.Getty Images

Such is the perilous nature of both players' status in the competition that a two-set defeat for either player all-but ends their campaign before their third match has barely begun. Similarly, having been defeated so convincingly on day one only a straight sets victory will truly keep them in contention. It could lead to an entertaining affair, the pair's first for three years.

What the players say

Tomas Berdych: You're going to get some players that you almost play week by week, you play them really very often in one or two years. Then there is a player that, you know, you didn't face for a long time. I think that's the case of playing with Kei. But, you know, I quite practice a lot with him. It's not going to be really unknown to play him after long time.

"What I can expect from that? Definitely it's going to be different match than [against Federer]. I mean, it's a completely different player with a different style of the game. I'm just going to need to get myself ready, prepared, try to brush this match off from my head and get ready for the next one, which is with Kei. Just be ready, be strong."

Kei Nishikori: "I think I got better everything [since working with Michael Chang]. I have more confidence than few years ago, before we started two years ago. My tennis I think getting much better, more aggressive now, using more forehand, coming in sometimes. That I not used to do before. Yeah, mentally also I got strong, too. So I'm very happy working with Michael."

Betting odds (source William Hill):

Tomas Berdych 4/7 vs 11/8 Kei Nishikori

Head-to-head record: Berdych 3-1 Nishikori. Last match Tokyo (hard) Nishikori bt Berdych 7-5 6-4

Previous meetings at the ATP World Tour Finals: N/A