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Watch highlights of the Cincinnati final, where Roger Federer defeated Novak Djokovic in straight sets. Watch live tennis on tennistv.com

Federer Foils Djokovic For Seventh Cincy Crown

Roger Federer denies Novak Djokovic the Career Golden Masters, adding a seventh Cincinnati title

Roger Federer won the 41st clash of titans against rival Novak Djokovic, claiming his seventh Western & Southern Open crown 7-6(1), 6-3 on Sunday.

Federer captured his 87th tour-level title and 24th at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 stage. Having beaten World No. 2 Andy Murray in the semi-finals, it marked the first time he had toppled the No. 1 and No. 2 players in the Emirates ATP Rankings in consecutive matches en route to a title. Federer will reclaim the No. 2 spot from the Scot when the new rankings are released on Monday.

"Now I've got the confidence, I've got the matches, and I'm actually still feeling really fresh even after this week, because the matches have been rather short," Federer said. "I think I moved well. I was explosive moving forward. Volleys were good. I think from the baseline I was hitting my forehand very well."

He takes home $731,000 and 1,000 Emirates ATP Rankings points, adding to Cincinnati titles won in 2005, '07, '09-10, '12 and '14. The Swiss finishes the week not conceding a break of serve in 49 service games.

"I tried to really mix it up on his second serve and I was hoping to serve good enough myself to keep me out of trouble," Federer added during an interview with ESPN following the match. "He had that one bad game at the beginning of the second set, which made the difference in the match.

"I've seen Novak adapt to my play over the years and he's also improved a lot. His movement and his backhand and forehand are always so solid. There aren't many errors coming out of his forehand wing now. Our rivalry has definitely evolved."

FEDERER'S HAPPY HUNTING GROUNDS

Tournament
Titles
Halle
8
Cincinnati
7
Wimbledon
7
Dubai
7

Djokovic, meanwhile, was vying to complete the Career Golden Masters, falling to 0-5 in Cincinnati finals (2008-09, '11-12). A 24-time ATP World Tour Masters 1000 champion, he falls to 54-26 in tour-level finals.

"I think he's more aggressive here than in any other tournament because the surface and conditions allow him to play very fast," said Djokovic. "He generally copes well with the fast balls, the fast game. He likes this rhythm.

"It was right tactics for him. I knew coming into the match he was going to be aggressive. No question about it. So I tried to handle it. I did well until the tie-break in the first set. After that, he was just the better player.

"I made some double faults, dropped my (first) service game (in the second set). The way I played this week, it's great I managed to reach the finals."

Federer owns a 21-20 edge in their FedEx ATP Head2Head rivalry, exacting revenge on Djokovic following the Serb's victory in their most recent meeting - the 2015 Wimbledon final. Djokovic is 3-2 this year, also claiming wins on the clay of Rome and hard courts of Indian Wells. Federer's other victory came in the Dubai title match.

How The Final Was Won
Federer had adopted an ultra aggressive mentality in cruising through the draw thus far, and the Swiss carried that same approach into Sunday's final. He won 40 per cent of return points entering the encounter and pressed for an early break immediately. Djokovic saved a trio of break points in the third game and another after a six-minute fifth game.

The opener would proceed to a tie-break, where Federer would snatch an early mini-break. A majestic looping backhand clipped the baseline to give the Basel native a 3-1 lead. He would not look back, taking 10 of the last 11 points to claim the first set. He hit 20 winners and won 16 of 21 net points to win the opener in 52 minutes.

Federer would continue applying pressure on the Djokovic serve as the match progressed, surging to a 3-0 lead in the second set after the top seed double faulted to hand the initial break to the Swiss. He would hold serve to the finish line, striking 32 winners and seven aces in total.