Novak Djokovic ended the 2015 tennis season on a historic note. Never before a player has been as successful as Djokovic was in a single ATP season. On Sunday, the Serb ended the challenge of 6-time ATP World Tour winner Roger Federer with a commanding victory and finished way ahead of the field as world’s no.1 tennis player. Federer’s loss meant that Great Britain’s Andy Murray retained his no.2 spot and Federer continued as no.3. Rafael Nadal jumped to the 5th spot behind Switzerland’s Stan Wawrinka. But talking about Sunday’s singles final of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finale and the 44th meeting between the two tennis greats; Djokovic is within one victory of overtaking Federer in the Head-to-Head count that now stands at 22-22. For India’s Rohan Bopanna and Romania’s Florin Mergea, the dream campaign ended on a losing note with Dutchman Jean-Julien Rojer and Romanian Horia Tecau taking the men’s doubles crown. The Dutch/Romanian duo thus finished a memorable week at London’s O2 Arena.
Novak Djokovic has been playing marvelous tennis since the start of the 2014 season. In two years on the circuit, he has claimed four Grand Slam titles. In the remaining four, the Serb reached the finals at French Open in 2014 and 2015. Incidentally, the French Open is the only tournament that has eluded Djokovic. He lost to Rafael Nadal in 2014 and Stan Wawrinka denied him the Roland Garros crown in 2015. But the way he is playing, he still has a great chance of fulfilling that ambition as well. With 16,585 Emirates ranking points, the Serb is far too ahead of second-placed Andy Murray, whose point-count stands at a lowly 8650. Sunday’s victory brought Djokovic’s title count to 11 in 2015 and 59 overall in ATP Tour-Level events and the win assured him over $ 2 million from that tournament taking his 2015 earnings to over a whopping $20 million. With total career earnings of $91.22 million, Djokovic is second only to Roger Federer, who has amassed a little over $96 million. The two tennis biggies are on the threshold of breaking the $100 million barrier next year.
In the Tour Finals on Sunday, Djokovic was in his elements against the great Roger Federer. Unlike their Round-Robin encounter on Tuesday, Djokovic didn’t allow Federer to neutralize his first serve. Instead, the Serb clinched the first break to lead at 4-2. After holding his own serve in the next game, Djokovic broke Federer again to take the first set 6-3. Federer played better in the second set that went on serves until the ninth game. In the tenth, however, the world no.1 obtained another break and sealed the championship with a 6-3, 6-4 victory. The win against the Serb would have allowed Federer to bounce back to the no.2 spot but that didn’t happen.
In the men’s doubles final, Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea had hardly any chance against the supremely inspired Dutch/Romanian team of Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau. Bopanna was the first to serve in the opening set but despite sending down two aces, the Indian lost his serve. That was the only break in the 31-minute set, won by Rojer/Tecau after Tecau saved two break points at 3-2. In the second set, it was once again Bopanna, who lost his service at 2-2 and yet again in the final game even as Rojer/Tecau finished 6-4, 6-3 winners. It was Rojer/Tecau’s 11th team title and third of the year including the 2015 Wimbledon, where they defeated Jamie Murray/John Peers.
Other than Bopanna’s dream run, India was represented at this year’s Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in another way. India-based global technology giant Infosys joined ATP as a strategic partner to leverage the latest technological advances in mobility, cloud and analytics. Other than providing technological support, Infosys also became the Platinum sponsor of the ATP World Tour for the next three years. Like most other sports, tennis fans’ quest for content is on the rise and Infosys is in a sound position to enhance their active engagement with the game that includes contextual, real-time information and insights about the game across a variety of channels. Under their new agreement, Infosys and ATP will work together on the exclusive Scores & Stats Center powered Infosys Information Platform (IIP), an open-source data analytics platform for data visualization and analysis. This will revolutionize engagement with fans with an unprecedented insight and match predictions in real time. Infosys will also create a next-generation player engagement platform and mobile app to elevate the experience for players. This will help them register for tournaments, review travel information, connect with other players and stay up-to-date on all ATP World Tour news. In addition, Infosys will manage the infrastructure, applications and data of ATP World Tour by leveraging the elasticity and computational power of their cloud-based model.
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