David Ferrer claims fourth Auckland title to tie Emerson record
It took David Ferrer less than one week to get overthe semifinal defeat against Nikolay Davydenko in Doha. At one of his favoritetournaments in Auckland, the Heineken Open, the Spaniard proved that he is oneof the world's best players, beating Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber in thefinal to take home his 19th ATP World Tour title. The match (7-6,6-1), which lasted 78 minutes, was very close in the first set as Kohlschreiberserved for it at 4-5. Ferrer fought back and stormed past the second seededGerman to seal the match.
Ferrer, who already lifted the Auckland title in 2007,2011, and 2012, has equaled the record of Australia's tennis legend Roy Emerson,who until today was the only player to win the tournament four times. However,it is not the first time that the Spaniard has claimed three consecutive titlesat a tournament as he achieved this incredible feat in Acapulco from 2010 to2012.
I'm really happy, because I did a new record for mycareer. It's really nice to win one ATP tournament, but four times is verydifficult, said Ferrer. I think the first set was the key. He served to winthe first set, but he didn't take his chance. I tried to fight for every pointand in the important moments, I was there. In the tie-break, I played better.
The 30-year-old Ferrer will face Belgium's OlivierRochus in the first round of the Australian Open in Melbourne. He is the No. 1Spanish player as World No. 4 Rafa Nadal dropped out of the Grand Slamtournament which gives Ferrer the big chance to take away his compatriot'sranking position. Ferrer is the No. 4 seed in Australia and could take onSerbia's World No. 1 and defending champion Novak Djokovic in a possiblesemi-final clash.