Paris Masters: Djokovic humbles Wawrinka, meets Murray in final
World number one Novak Djokovic humbled Stan Wawrinka to book third straight Paris Masters final on Saturday. The Serbian won his semi-final match against the Swiss number two 6-3, 3-6, 6-0 in one hour and 53 minutes. He will play Andy Murray in the final.
New Delhi: World number one Novak Djokovic humbled Stan Wawrinka to book third straight Paris Masters final on Saturday. The Serbian won his semi-final match against the Swiss number two 6-3, 3-6, 6-0 in one hour and 53 minutes. He will play Andy Murray in the final.
Djokovic, who entered the contest with a 20-match winning streak took little time to bring his best and forced a 11-point game in the Wawrinka's very first service game. The Serbian, then break his opponent in the fourth game to take a 3-1 lead, and hold his serves to win the first set 6-3 in 41 minutes.
Then, it looked a one way traffic for the 28-year-old from Belgrade who has a head-to-head 18-4 record against Stan, including three of four meetings this season. But the Swiss, despite losing the first service game of the second set, started playing a champion, reminding everyone how he got the better of top-ranked player last time they met in Paris.
Wawrinka broke Djokovic in the fourth game, after a grueling 15-points play in his fifth break point opportunity. He doubled the break, with another in the sixth game. The world number four held his subsequent serves to win the set 6-3 in 46 minutes and forced a decider in Paris.
Having already won five Masters and three Grand Slam titles in an impressive season, Djokovic was the clear favourite to win the match, thanks to his uber confidence. Both the players progressed via a 7-6 7-6 victory in their quarter-finals matches against Tomas Berdych and Rafael Nadal respectively.
But, it was all Wawrinka could do against the world number one. The Serbian finished the deciding set in mere 26 minutes, breaking the Swiss thrice to make his fourth Paris Masters finals.
Djokovic previously won the tournament in 2009, 2013 and 2014 equaling his coach Boris Becker's and Marat Safin's three titles each.
Djokovic is bidding for his 10th title of the season and a third straight title at the Paris indoor event.
Earlier, a dominant Murray beat David Ferrer to reach the Paris Masters final for the first time with a straight forward 6-4 6-3 victory over David Ferrer. In a match lasting little over half and hour, the Briton won the last five games of the match, giving an uncharacteristic feel the the contest, which until then was looking a tight contest.
The Scot, 28, started in a blistering form, breaking the Spaniard's first service game, a trend the world number carried from the previous three matches. But Ferrer, always regarded as one of the best fighters in the circuit, won his first game on the third, after saving two break points in a 15-points play.
The Spaniard then leveled for 3-3, with a break of his own in the sixth game, thanks to a couple of erratic shots from Murray. Ferrer seemed to have gained the momentum, but went onto loss despite the first set despite having four break points in the eighth game.
Murray, who had 26 winners to 10 from Ferrer in the match, broke again in the ninth game, and sealed off with an easy service game in the tenth game, for a 6-4 score in 50 minutes.
In the second set, 2012 winner Ferrer took the initiative early, breaking Murray in the fourth game for a 3-1 lead, and looking prime to level the game. But, the Scot prevailed over his 33-year-old rival with some stunning shot making, and won the next five games to enter the final.
With the win, Murray also improved his head-to-head record against Ferrer to 11-6, including six of their last seven encounters.
In the quarter-finals, Murray beat local favourite Richard Gasquet in a punishing three-set game.
The second-seeded Briton is chasing his fifth title of 2015, and 36th overall. His last title came in Montreal, when he beat Djokovic the final of the Rogers Cup in August. If Murray wins Sunday's final, he will finish the year second in the world rankings.
Both the finalists will feature in the high-stakes season ending ATP World Tour Finals in London in eight days time.