• Switzerland's news in English
Djokovic fends off Federer for 50th title
Federer: Disappointed "to let it slip away". Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP

Djokovic fends off Federer for 50th title

AFP · 23 Mar 2015, 09:04

Published: 23 Mar 2015 09:04 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The 27-year-old world number one also captured his fourth Indian Wells crown and is now tied with world number two Federer for the most men's titles in the California desert.

"The trophy is very heavy," Djokovic told the crowd as he celebrated adding to the titles he won in 2008 and 2011 as well as last year.

It was another epic struggle in a long list of hardcourt battles between the two top players in the world, who have met 38 times with Swiss great Federer still holding a slight 20-18 edge.

Djokovic had lost his last two matches to Federer in straight sets after beating him in last year's Wimbledon final.

The five-time Australian Open winner also needed three sets to beat Federer in the 2014 Indian Wells title match.

Djokovic's range of emotions Sunday went from shaking while trying to take a drink of water during a changeover, to breaking a racquet in fit of anger to the sweet bliss of beating the 17-time Grand Slam winner and one of the greatest of all-time on the big stage.

"If you look at the big picture, I thought I deserved it in an way, because I really fought for it," said Djokovic.

"I am at the prime of my career. I am going to use every part of this fact to stay where I am and to fight for as many major titles as possible.

"I don't think these challenges that I go through and the pressure that I feel are harming me or that I find it difficult. It is a privilege because I earned it."

Djokovic and Federer have combined to win eight of the last 12 Indian Wells titles but this is the first time they have met in back-to-back finals.

Federer insisted people shouldn't read too much into this loss.

"I have beat him the last couple times. It is not like I lost 10 in a row," Federer said. "A lot depends on how well he serves and returns. We usually play in finals so we are both peaking at the same time."

Djokovic blasted eight aces, 26 winners and broke Federer five times in the two hour, 17 minute battle in front of a crowd of about 15,000 inside the Tennis Garden stadium.

Surpassed coach Becker

Djokovic surpassed his coach Boris Becker (49) to become the 12th player in Open Era history with 50 ATP Tour titles.

Even though he had the crowd on his side, Federer couldn't overcome his poor serving and 43 unforced errors.

"Novak did well to sustain the lead for most of the match," Federer said.

"I think he found an extra gear in the end."

Djokovic jumped all over Federer's serve, allowing the Swiss to win just 15 points off the second serve.

"He (Djokovic) returns so well off the second serve," Federer said. "I am disappointed the end was flat from my side."

Story continues below…

Federer's best moments came in the last half of the middle set when he broke Djokovic for the first time in the match to rally from an earlier break and level the set at 4-4.

Federer won the second set tiebreaker 7-5 but he got some help from Djokovic who made three double faults and then hammered a backhand long on set point.

But Djokovic broke Federer again early in the third to grab a 2-0 lead.

The Basel native got one back in a ten-minute third game that extended the epic battle to the two-hour mark.

The tight third game went back and forth until Federer won it on the fifth break chance after Djokovic slammed a backhand into the net.

"My best spell was midway through the second to midway through the third set," Federer said.

"It was disappointing to let it slip away."

For more news from Switzerland, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Illegal immigrant dies after setting himself on fire
The victim was treated at University Hospital Zurich. Photo: University Hospital Zurich

The 45-year-old Tunisian was threatened with deportation.

Swiss government rejects call for second immigration vote
Photo: Justus Blumer/Christophe G

The Swiss government has rejected a popular initiative calling for a revote on plans to limit immigration.

Bern: companies should report salary inequality by law
File photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

The Swiss government wants to force small companies to examine their rates of pay every four years.

Husband in custody after Orbe body identified
File photo: Bas Leenders

The deceased is a 55-year-old woman who lived in the house with her husband.

Presented by MoneyPark
How to get a mortgage in Switzerland
Houses in Zürich. Photo: Pixabay.

Ready to buy? Here’s what you need to know as an expat about Swiss regulations, how to finance your purchase, and why you should use a broker.

Autumn in Switzerland: ten stunning Instagram photos
Photo: Swiss Tourism/Jan Geerk

Switzerland is beautiful in all seasons, but as these photos show, autumn is a special time in the alpine country.

Report: Swiss progress slows on gender equality
File photo: David Soulivet

Globally, it will take 170 years to achieve gender equality, according to the World Economic Forum.

Brothers go to court to stop suicide of sibling
File photo: Lisa Edmonds

Two men have filed a legal bid to prevent the Swiss assisted suicide association Exit from helping their older brother to kill himself.

Wawrinka snubs past form to reach Basel second round
Wawrinka beat local wildcard Marco Chiudinelli. Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP

US Open champion Stan Wawrinka has reached the second round in Basel after going out in the first round for the past four years.

Villagers asked to help fund bridge renovations
The bridge links the two villages of Veltheim (pictured) and Holderbank. Photo: Lutz Fischer-Lamprecht

The crowdfunding campaign by the two communes is the first of its kind in Switzerland.

Photo: Unterirdisch Ueberleben
Inside Switzerland’s largest nuclear bunker – 40 years on
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: The Local
Ticino firefighters rescue cow from swimming pool
Photo: Antoni Da Campo
Vegan wins battle to be accepted by Swiss army
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Ten Swiss ski resorts named most expensive in Europe
Photo: Randy Kashka
Swiss women will ‘work for free’ for the rest of year
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Montreux throws hat in Olympic rings
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Seven things you’ll miss about Switzerland if you leave
Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
jobs available