Wawrinka wins Dubai title in straight sets over Baghdatis
ABS-CBN Sports on Feb 28, 2016 09:15 AM
Stan Wawrinka from Switzerland holds the trophy after he beats Marcos Baghdatis from Cyprus during the final match of the Dubai Tennis Championships in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Saturday, Feb. 27, 2016. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)
SANDRA HARWITT, Associated Press
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Stan Wawrinka won the battle of the 30-year-olds by defeating Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus 6-4, 7-6 (13) to win the Dubai Tennis Championships title Saturday.
Wawrinka, the second-seed who came to Dubai as a solo act without his coach, had been two points from defeat in the first round to Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine. "It's an amazing end of week for sure." Wawrinka said. This is the third time that Wawrinka has played in Dubai. In his previous two visits, the Swiss never won a match.
The victory is Wawrinka's second title of the year. He won a third consecutive Chennai title last month and has won the last nine finals he's played, including the 2014 Australian Open and 2015 French Open. He last lost a final in 2013. "There is no explanation," Wawrinka replied when asked why he wins so many finals. "I know that the more I win matches in the same week, the more confidence I get. I know normally when I get some finals that I play my best tennis."
Baghdatis, who was unseeded, has now lost his last seven finals. Nevertheless, the 2006 Australian Open finalist was encouraged by his showing in Dubai, beating fourth-seed Roberto Bautista Agut, fifth-seed Viktor Troicki and sixth-seed Feliciano Lopez.
"I didn't win the tournament this week but I won a lot more, I won my confidence back," Baghdatis said. "I'm happy I'm back and playing this kind of tennis now."
Wawrinka, who has beaten Baghdatis all six times they've played, broke serve on a fifth set point in the 10th game to close out the first set. Baghdatis double-faulted three times in that game, including the final point.
There were no break points in the 12 games of the second set.
Wawrinka initially led 4-1 in the tiebreaker, and saved four set points to win on his fourth match point on a Bagdhatis backhand error.