Stan Wawrinka upsets Novak Djokovic to claim first French Open title
For the third time in four years, Novak Djokovic has fallen just short of completing his career Grand Slam at the French Open. A finalist in 2012 and 2014, Djokovic once again made it all the way to the final day at Roland Garros, but could not find the necessary shots to bring home the Coupe des Mousquetaires.
After dispensing of King of Clay Rafael Nadal in straight sets in the quarters, and then taking out Andy Murray over the course of a two-day, five-set semifinal match, the stars appeared to have aligned for the eight-time major winner. However, on Sunday in front of a raucous crowd, Djokovic ran into a buzz saw on Court Philippe Chatrier.
After a yeoman opening set, Stanislas Wawrinka was absolutely dazzling throughout the match's final three sets. As the contest wore on he was the quicker of the two players, covering all angles of the court and uncorking blistering forehand winners seemingly at will.
Beyond that, his one-handed backhand, arguably the best in the game right now, seemed to baffle Djokovic at points throughout the match.
After dropping the first set 4-6, Wawrinka broke Djokovic midway through the second and from there dictated the match. The only spot of trouble he ran into was in the fourth set, when Djokovic opened by twice holding serve and also breaking Wawrinka. Alas, rather than a late surge, it was more of a last gasp by the world's No. 1-ranked player. Wawrinka would regain his composure, hold serve, break back and eventually topple Djokovic 4-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 – closing the match, fittingly, with a backhand winner.
With the victory, Wawrinka shares several historical notes with fellow countryman Roger Federer, whom he doused in the quarterfinals. Wawrinka and Federer (2009) are now the only two players to win the French since Nadal staked ownership of the tournament a decade ago. Beyond that, Wawrinka is now the first male player over the age of 30 to win a major since Federer claimed Wimbledon in 2012. A late bloomer, Wawrinka now owns two career Grand Slams, having won the 2014 Australian Open.
Players will now turn their sights to Wimbledon, which kicks off later this month and runs from June 29-July 12. Djokovic, a two-time winner, is the defending champion. Wawrinka's best finish was in the quarterfinals of last year's tournament.More from FanSided:
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