No. 1 seed Roger Federer of Switzerland capped off an impressive week by defeating No. 4 seed Novak Djokovic of Serbia, 6-1, 7-5, in two hours and six minutes on Sunday afternoon to capture his third Western & Southern Financial Group Masters 1000 title in Cincinnati.
The 28-year-old Swiss, who owns a record 15 Grand Slam singles titles, came out firing, jumping ahead 5-0, before closing out the 33-minute opening set, 6-1.
“He was just too good in the first set,” said Djokovic, who fell to 4-8 lifetime against the Swiss. “I didn’t start very energetic, and my body language wasn’t (what) it was last night (against Rafael Nadal).”
In the second set, Djokovic secured an early break in the second game and got ahead 3-0, but Federer quickly broke back to get back on serve at 3-2, before leveling the match at 3-3. Federer, who earned his 61st ATP World Tour title in 83 final appearances, had a break point opportunity at 3-all, but was unable to capitalize on the moment.
At 4-5, 30-40 down, Federer faced a set point but was able to come up with impressive shots to fight off the set point that Djokovic held.
During a very critical stage of the second set, Djokovic failed at a drop shot attempt at 5-5, deuce. Federer, who has now won 16 career ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles, capitalized on the opportunity by winning the next point to break Djokovic’s serve.
Federer served out the match to win the title at ease and showed his excitement by raising his arms in happiness.
The Swiss, whose wife recently gave birth to twin daughters, insisted his first title as a new dad was very special.
“I think the special part (is) winning for the first time as a dad,” said Federer, who improved to 47-7 on the season. “It’s a great thing. Gets me going emotionally a little bit, because I know it’s been a wonderful summer.”
For the third straight match, Federer was remarkable on his serve, smashing seven aces and no double faults, while winning 85 percent of first serve points. Djokovic, who is now 4-6 in ATP World Tour Masters 1000 finals, hit three aces, one double fault and only managed to win 60 percent of first serve points. Federer broke Djokovic’s serve on four of 15 opportunities, while the Serb only broke once throughout the match.
Djokovic, who rolled past No. 2 seed Rafael Nadal on Saturday evening to reach Sunday’s final, earned a runner-up check worth $222,000, as well as 600 South African Airways ATP rankings points.
“It’s been a great week for me and I got a lot of matches in before the US Open,” said Djokovic, who has now lost in the finals for two straight years in Cincinnati.
The Swiss, who improved to 12-6 against Top 10 players in 2009, earned a winner’s check worth $443,500 and 1000 ranking points.
Having lost just one match since losing in the Masters 1000 in Madrid in May, Federer is the favorite for the US Open in New York that beings on August 31.