Wawrinka Prolongs Chennai Streak
Swiss will play for fourth title in final
Top seed Stan Wawrinka stretched his Chennai winning streak to 11 matches and 22 sets with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Benoit Paire in the semi-finals on Saturday. The Swiss improved his FedEx ATP Head2Head record against his good friend to 6-1. The pair captured the Chennai doubles title three years ago.
“I thought I played well today and I am happy with my level,” Wawrinka said. “It’s never easy to play against [Paire], but we always enjoy playing against each other, and it’s nice to share this moment with a friend.”
Paire also came into the semi-finals without dropping a set, but the 2011, 2014 and 2015 Chennai champion performed flawlessly against a familiar opponent. Wawrinka struck six aces, saved his only break point faced and broke Paire twice to secure the win in 65 minutes.
Standing in the way of a fourth Wawrinka triumph in six years at the event is Borna Coric, who overcame a stern Aljaz Bedene challenge to win 7-6(5), 6-7(5), 6-3 in three hours. The 19 year-old becomes the youngest ATP World Tour finalist since Kei Nishikori (2008 Delray Beach) and the first teen to play for a title since Marin Cilic (2008 New Haven). Bedene, last year's finalist,fell just short in repeating his 2015 showing.
"I am very happy to be in my first final,” Coric said. “I played well today, I was brave when it mattered. Getting to the final in my first tournament of the new season is a big boost and I think it is going to help me have a good year.
“I don't think I'm a Top 20 player yet. There are small details that I need to add to my game and those will get me closer to the best players in the world."
Wawrinka has won both career meetings against Coric, including a 6-1, 6-4 victory in Chennai 12 months ago.