Seed number three Stanislas Wawrinka became the first finalist of the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters 2014 after winning a straight-sets battle against David Ferrer who eliminated World no. 1 Rafael Nadal the day before. Neither of the rivals has dropped a set earlier in the tournament. The sixth-seeded Spaniard, who ended runner-up in Monte Carlo in 2011, had a slight advantage in the head-to-head score which stood at 7-5 prior to the clash.
The opener was all about the highest-ranked Swiss who bossed his opponent around from the very beginning. He started the contest with a comfortable hold and created a double break point in the second game. After conceding a few mistakes Stan finally broke the deadlock by chasing down the Spaniard’s drop shot. The reigning Australian Open champion continued with a powerful and uncompromising display which allowed him to execute a series of winners from both sides and clinch a second consecutive break to go 4-0 up. He faced the only pair of break points in the following service game, yet both of them were saved and Wawrinka soon produced a set point after a strong serve and converted it with a trademark backhand down-the-line to lead the winner count 16-1 after the first set.
As expected, the Spanish number two improved as the match wore on, whilst Stan’s unforced errors count started to rise in the second set. The crowd at the Court Central thus witnessed a neck-and-neck race which was bound to be decided in a tie-break. Wawrinka again raised the level of serving in the closing stages of the set and reinstated his dominance in the breaker. He opened it with a mini-break and added another one by hitting an outstanding backhand winner to go 4-0 up. Ferrer then grabbed two points in a row, but was unable to prevent the Swiss to win 6-1, 7-6 (3) and enter his third Masters final. Wawrinka will now wait for the outcome of a blockbuster between Djokovic and Federer later this afternoon.
“He started playing unbelievable,” said Ferrer. “I didn’t have any option to stop him. I didn’t return serve very well. In the second set, he made a few more mistakes. I played with more power on my forehand. But, anyway, Stan was better. All the time he moved the ball better than me.”