"Basically, in Japan, they're not giants," added Bollettieri. "You look at some of the good players, they're very strong, good ground strokes," he said.
"It gives hope, and you get more people out there playing the game. The more people that play the game increases your chances of having good players, great players, and hopefully some day a champion."
Nishikori's recent victory in the Japan Open, when he became the first Japanese player to claim the title since the competition began in 1972, has only strengthened the belief within his camp that a grand slam title is within reach.
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The 22-year-old's epic victory over France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the Australian Open in January saw him become the first player from Japan to make the last eight in Melbourne since 1932.
And with time on his side, the hope is that Nishikori could finally end Japan's long wait for a major champion.
"Of course I want to win grand slams," he said. "I think everyone is the same. But my favourite tournaments are the U.S. Open and the French Open -- those two I like. So hopefully I can win one of the grand slams."
Nishikori's first ATP Tour title at Delray Beach came at the tender age of 18 when he was still outside the top 240 players in the world. It was Japan's first tournament success since Shuzuo Matsuoka won the Seoul Open in 1992.
It also served as justification for his family's decision to send him to Bollettieri's academy as a 13-year-old, even though he spoke not a word of English.
"The first year was tough, because without English I was really shy so I couldn't speak much with friends," explained Nishikori. "But I was enjoying playing tennis all day. I would start playing tennis from 7am until 5pm, so that was fun for me."
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His Delray Beach triumph gave rise to what became known as 'Project 45' in Japan.
Positively Orwellian in title, it was actually Nishikori's mission to overhaul Matsuoka's career best ranking of 46 -- the highest any Japanese player has ever reached.
He broke through that particular barrier at last year's Shanghai Masters and now has his sights set on the top 10. Should he do that, Nishikori might have to increase his wardrobe of disguises, to avoid being mobbed on home soil.
"In Japan it is a bit crazy. I have to hide -- I have to wear caps, sunglasses, masks. I look weird but sometimes I have to do that. Like when I go shopping everybody starts tailing to me and I can't concentrate to shop!"