Roger Federer claimed his sixth Dubai crown in 2014 following a 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Tomas Berdych. It was Roger’s 78th ATP title, leaving John McEnroe at 77. The Swiss had struggled to deal with the best players in the world for the past year and a half.
He had won just one tournament after Cincinnati 2012, entering Dubai as world no. 8, his worst ranking of him since November 2002!
Roger kicked off the action with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Benjamin Becker, dropping just 12 points on serve and moving to the top with three service breaks.
He had to work much harder against Radek Stepanek, dropping serve four times in a 6-2, 6-7, 6-3 win after more than two hours. The Swiss prevailed with eight breaks and set up the quarterfinal meeting with another Czech, Lukas Rosol.
Federer was more efficient this time, needing 58 minutes to finish the match 6-2, 6-2 and advance to his ninth semi-final in Dubai, saving energy for more challenging matches.
Roger Federer claimed his sixth Dubai crown in 2014.
Federer came from a set down to dethrone world no.
2 Novak Djokovic 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, playing better and better as the match progressed and securing a place in the final. The clash between Federer and Berdych lasted two hours, and Roger scored his 12th win in 18 meetings against Tomás.
The crowd favorite overcame a slow start to cross the finish line first and celebrate the title. Both players struggled to find the first serve and we saw ten break chances on each side. Roger fended off seven and earned four breaks to prevail and claim his first ATP title since Halle last June.
Federer opened an early lead with a break at love at 1-1. Tomas kept his cool, cutting the break short after a few minutes and delivering another to move ahead 4-2 and set an excellent pace. Serving for the set at 5-3, Berdych hit a service winner to take the opener and move closer to his first Dubai crown.
Federer repelled two break points in the fifth game of the second set with aces. However, his forehand went wide in the third to send Tomás up a set and a break, with no room for more errors. The Swiss broke in the next game when Berdych scored a backhand and had the momentum.
Roger claimed the last eight points of the set to seal it with a break in the tenth game at 6-4, setting up a decider where he was the favourite. Tomás saved three break chances early in the third set and won one in the next game.
Federer denied it with a forehand winner and made the decisive move with a break a few minutes later that propelled him 3-1 in front. Roger consolidated the advantage with a hold at 15, but could have been more efficient the next time he served.
The Swiss fended off two break points in game seven to stay in front and created two match points on the return at 5-2. Tomas did his best to save them and prolong the match before Federer held in the 15th with a service winner at 5-3 to wrap up the win and restore the Dubai crown he lost a year ago.