Novak Djokovic is unstoppable. By claiming the Italian Open on Sunday, the Serbian world no.1 made it to 5 titles this tennis season. In the final of the Rome Masters at the iconic Foro Italico, Djokovic defeated world no.2 Roger Federer in straight sets and lifted the Italian Open Trophy for the fourth time. The women’s crown was won by Russia’s Maria Sharapova, who warmed up for the defense of her French Open title with a tough victory over Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro. But in the women’s doubles, the Indo-Swiss pair of Sania Mirza/Martina Hingis fell in the final hurdle to end on the losing side against the Hungarian-French pair of Timea Babos and Kristina Mladenovic. The men’s double title was captured by Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas and Spain’s David Marrero, who defeated Spaniards Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez in the final.
At the 2015 Rome Masters, the men’s singles title challenge could not have had a better field than world’s two top players. The ball began to fly off the clay surface at Rome in the early stages of the game. Djokovic had dropped a set in each of his previous two matches and that would have caused him something to worry about. But in the final, he won his first 10 points on serve out of 11. At 4-4, with Djokovic serving, Federer took a 0/30 lead but the Serb clawed back and as Federer forced the deuce and earned a break opportunity. Djokovic took control of himself, edged ahead 5-4 and broke Federer in the next game to take the set 6-4. By this time, Djokovic had struck 11 winners and won 89 per cent of first serve points. In the second set, Federer kept his rhythm and produced some moments of brilliance as he powered a backhand winner to save a break point in the second game. But against the ruthless Djokovic, that didn’t prove enough as the Serb still got the break for a 2-0 lead. Pocketing his own service next, Djokovic stood in command at 3-0. The Serb continued with a methodical and powerful game and yielded only three points to finish at 6-4, 6-3 as he claimed his fourth Rome title in 76 minutes, when Federer struck a forehand wide on match point.
Russia’s Maria Sharapova began by losing the first set 4-6 against Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro in the women’s final. But the Russian came back in the second set as she broke Navarro to take a 5-3 lead. The Spaniard didn’t throw in the towel as she found the break to level scores 5-5. In the next two games, the Russian proved too strong as she broke Navarro yet again and held her serve to take the set 7-5. Afterwards, Navarro couldn’t match the power of the Russian and lost the match 6-4, 5-7, 1-6.
In the women’s doubles, the Indo-Swiss duo of Sania Mirza/Martina Hingis couldn’t live up to expectations as they were easily upset by Hungarian-French pair of Timea Babos/Kristina Mladenovic in straight sets. Babos/ Mladenovic took 73 minutes to win at 6-4, 6-3 win on the outdoor clay courts of Foro Italico. This was the fourth final for Mirza/Hingis, who won the titles at Indian Wells, Miami and Charleston earlier in the year.
In the men’s doubles championship match, Uruguay’s Pablo Cuevas and Spain’s David Marrero played against Spaniards Marcel Granollers/Marc Lopez. Cuevas/Marrero had an early slip as they lacked confidence in the first set. Marrero mistimed two strokes and as Granollers/Lopez looked for consolidation, Marrero clung on to win three straight points for 1-1. Afterwards, the Uruguayan/Spanish combo played with more confidence to take the first set 6-4. The second set was equally hard-fought but Cuevas/Marrero found a break in the 11th game to take 6-5 lead and served out for the match to walk away with a 6-4, 7-5 victory.
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