Chennai, Jan 10 (IANS) Swiss star Stan Wawrinka successfully defended his men’s singles title once again at the 20th edition of the $425,535 Chennai Open with comprehensive straight sets win over Borna Coric of Croatia at the SDAT Tennis Stadium here on Sunday evening. The reigning French Open champion took barely an hour and 27 minutes to drub World No.44 Coric in the final with the scoreline reading 6-3, 7-5 on the outdoor hard court. This is World No.4 Wawrinka’s third win in as many meetings over the 19-year-old Croat. This is also the top seed’s fourth title here, having won in 2011, 2014 and 2015 apart from the men’s doubles crown he clinched with Frenchman Benoit Paire in 2013.
Wawrinka had a clear and easy journey in the first set, managing to win all his service games despite giving away five break point opportunities, which Coric failed to convert. In exchange, the Swiss got one breakpoint chance in the sixth game which he converted — enough to take the lead by sealing the set in his favour. The 30-year-old’s serve came in very handy in the first set of the summit clash as Wawrinka fired in as many as 10 aces to none of his World No.44 opponents. Overall, Wawrinka won 40 of the 70 points played in the set. The teenager gave tougher competition to Wawrinka in the second set by not losing his serve till the 10th game. But Wawrinka’s experience helped him convert a breakpoint chance in the 11th game. Serving for the set and match at 6-5, the defending champion eased to victory to claim another title here and prepare himself for the first Major of the year — Australian Open — due to start in a week’s time.
“I’m really happy to win the match the way I played today. Again it was in two sets as it has been all tournament. The crowd was amazing. They give amazing support every year,” said the Swiss, who takes home $75,700 in prize money and 250 ranking points. “I’m always trying to improve. I’m trying to move better, trying to play more aggressive with a better forehand and serve better. I’m very happy with my serve this week. I’m happy to get the trophy again. It’s a great feeling.” The top seed extended his run of dominance in the Tamil Nadu capital to a 12-match win streak, including 24 consecutive sets won. He completed the first hat-trick in the history of the tournament. Later in the men’s doubles final, Austrian-French third seeds Oliver Marach and Fabrice Martin defeated American-French pairing of Austin Krajicek and Benoit Paire 6-3, 7-5 in an hour and nine minutes to take the crown.