The 29-year-old today collected his first title since 2016 Memphis, beating Russian Daniil Medvedev 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 to win Brisbane.
And the victory had the added bonus for Nishikori of cementing his place at No9 just ahead of the draw for the Australian Open.
He was runner-up in Brisbane in 2017 but went one better this year in a superb final. He's one of the talented players on the tour and fun to watch. "Serve and return was phenomenal", Nishikori said.
"I'm going to go there and practice tomorrow and see how it goes and decide from there", Medvedev said on Sunday. Medvedev had won three titles just previous year, one of them against Nishikori.in Japan, just to rub salt into the wound.
Standing between Pliskova and a second Brisbane final in three seasons is Donna Vekic.
Medvedev came back from 0-3 down in the first set then saved two set points in the first set tiebreak before running away with the second.
But Nishikori recovered to storm into a 5-1 lead in the decider and he soon wrapped up victory.
"To win the tournament is very emotional".
Regardless of whether he choses to play in Sydney or not, Medvedev leaves Brisbane with strong preparation behind him for the Australian Open.
"I always start with this tournament and Melbourne".
"I just tried to change the things around a little bit and believed I was going to get a chance". The final also marked the return of Berdych after nearly seven months off the tour with injury.
That's why he will likely have his feet up on Saturday, having done what he could to run 33-year-old Tsonga off his on Friday.
De Minaur, ranked at a career-high world No. 31 after winning the 2018 ATP Newcomer of the Year, was broken twice in the opening set as Tsonga took control.
Tsonga - a 2008 Australian Open finalist - wound back the clock to beat de Minaur 6-4 7-6 (7-2) on Pat Rafter Arena as he continued his promising return following a seven-month injury hiatus previous year.