Wawrinka battles past Baghdatis to claim Dubai crown


Stan Wawrinka continued Switzerland's domination at the Dubai Tennis Championships with a 6-4 7-6 (15-13) victory over Marcos Baghdatis, claiming his 13th career title.

Wawrinka's compatriot Roger Federer had won three of the last four titles in Dubai but, with the world number three injured, it was Wawrinka who stepped up.

The 30-year-old had to battle his way past his Cypriot opponent, particularly in a tight second set - his trademark backhand working superbly to produce a flurry of points throughout Saturday's final.

It took the loss of his own serve in the fifth game of the match to spark him into life, though, with the world number four winning four of the remaining five to take the set - albeit at the fifth attempt.

A tight second offered little in the way of an opening for either player and it was not until the inevitable tie-break that the set sprung into life.

Wawrinka immediately applied pressure on his rival and opened up a 3-0 lead, but Baghdatis was not going down without a fight.

He threw away five set points as he desperately tried to take the match to a third set, but it was not to be as Wawrinka finally put away his fourth match point to claim his second win of 2016.

The Swiss' victory also extends his unbeaten run in finals to nine.