The Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London came to anti-climactic end as World No. 2 and six-time champion Roger Federer had to pull out of the final, as he wasn’t match-fit, giving Djokovic his third consecutive ATP Finals title.
Having shared a staggering 9 out of the last 11 ATP Finals title between them, Djokovic and Federer (ranked No. 1 and 2 in the world currently) seemed destined for another historic final since the start of tournament. Djokovic breezed through the round-robin stage winning all three games in straight sets including a 6-3 6-0 over reigning Australian Open Champion Stanislas Wawrinka. Federer was equally dominant in his group, progressing to the semi-finals without dropping a set, including a 6-0 6-1 walloping of local hero Andy Murray.
The semi-finals proved to be sterner tests for both stalwarts. After coasting through the first set, Djokovic was clearly unsettled by the crowd in the second allowing Japanese sensation and US Open runner-up Kei Nishikori to force a decider. However, Djokovic settled down to claim the final set 6-0 and clinch a place in the final for the third year running.
Federer had to survive four match points against fellow Swiss compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka before clinching a 4-6 7-5 7-6 (8/6) victory in a match that lasted almost three hours. Wawrinka served for the set in the decider and blew chances in the tie-breaker in the third-set before Federer closed out the match to set up a mouth-watering tie against Djokovic.
With Federer having edged Djokovic 3-2 in meetings this year and Djokovic having clinched the World No. 1 and the Wimbledon title in an epic five-setter against the Swiss, the script could not have been better written as the magnificent O2 Arena in London got set to host its sixth straight final, only to meet a most unfortunate end with Federer personally addressing the expectant crowd explaining how despite the best efforts including painkillers, rest and training, he was unable to get match fit.
Over in the men’s doubles section the Bryan brothers maintained their dominance, securing their fourth consecutive championship at the season-ending finale. In a year in which they clinched a record 100th title by winning the US Open, Bob and Mike Bryan had to comeback from a set down against Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo to clinch the title 6-7(5/7) 6-2 10-7.