Roger Federer warmed up for the defence of his US Open title in perfect fashion as he beat fourth seed Novak Djokovic 6-1 7-5 to win the Cincinnati Masters yesterday.
The 15-times grand-slam champion ripped through the first set and then came from 3-0 down to win the second and clinch his fourth title of the year. “A good start always helps,” Federer said. “I played awesome [against Andy Murray in the semi-final] and the whole week’s been great for me.”
Djokovic had beaten former world No1 Rafa Nadal in the semi-finals on Saturday but after a quick turnaround he looked sluggish early on.
A 13-minute second game proved crucial as Federer broke for 2-0 and another break two games later helped him to take the opening set.
Djokovic, runner-up last year, hitback at the start of the second set and broke the Federer serve. But the Swiss broke back two games later and forced three more break points on the Djokovic serve in the eighth game, only for the Serb to hold on.
A rare forehand mistake from Federer gave Djokovic a set point at 5-4 but the Swiss saved it with a big serve. After holding for 5-5, Federer then broke Djokovic again and served out comfortably to clinch his 16th Masters Series title and his 61st career crown.