Stan Wawrinka fights back to beat Novak Djokovic in four sets to win US Open
Third seed Stan Wawrinka beat defending champion Novak Djokovic 6-7(1) 6-4 7-5 6-3 to win the US Open for the third Grand Slam title of his career.
The 31-year-old Swiss, who defeated Djokovic on his way to winning the 2014 Australian Open and 2015 French Open, denied the world number one a third grand slam title this year following his wins in Australia and France.
“This is amazing. I came here without expecting. But every time I step on the court I try to win every match,” said Wawrinka after the match.
"I think I played a lot of tennis in these two weeks! I'm probably empty."
Stan Wawrinka rose to the occasion once again to beat top-seeded defending champion Novak Djokovic 6-7(1) 6-4 7-5 6-3AFP
Djokovic, who became the third man to hold all four grand slam singles titles at once after his triumph at Roland Garros in June, came into the final with a 19-4 career head-to-head record against the Swiss.
However, Wawrinka, who has now won 11 finals on the bounce, regrouped having lost the first set in a one-sided tie-breaker to hit 46 winners on his way to a third grand slam title.
The Swiss was more decisive in the key moments, taking six of the 10 break opportunities he fashioned while the usually clinical Djokovic only managed to convert three of the 17 on offer on the Wawrinka serve.
"You were the more courageous player. He just deserves this title. Well done," said Djokovic to Wawrinka during his on-court post-match interview.
The opening three sets were fairly even affairs decided by the finest of margins but Djokovic began to struggle physically in the fourth.
The world number one, who benefited from a walkover and two retirements on his way to the final, called for the trainer twice, and struggled to keep pace with the superlative tennis from the Swiss third seed.
The second medical time out, with Wawrinka 3-1 to the good, mustered a slight improvement from Djokovic, who managed to hold serve to stay in touch with the buoyant Swiss star.
A trainer works on the foot of Novak Djokovic of Serbia while playing Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland during their 2016 US Open men's final match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on September 11, 2016AFP
However, Wawrinka had fashioned himself an unassailable advantage and a long backhand handed the title to the Swiss after a near four-hour, groundstroke epic.
Wawrinka, 31, is a Wimbledon title shy of completing the career grand slam, while Djokovic has lost five of his seven finals at Flushing Meadows.
"He loves to play in the big matches," Djokovic added.
"He comes up with his best game. He's so solid from both corners. He's got a good slice and amazing one-handed backhand, all corners. Big serve. Moves well. He's a very complete player."
With additional reporting from Reuters