Andy Murray became the first man in a decade and a half to back up a title in Canada, defeating Roger Federer 7-5, 7-5 amid an afternoon of rain delays to win the Toronto Masters on Sunday.
The victory in just over two hours was a breakthrough for the world number four Scot, who had lost finals to the Swiss in Bangkok, 2005, the US Open two years ago and at the Australian Open in January. Andre Agassi was the last to win two in a row in Canada, 1994-1995.
Murray and Federer played through distractions and a cumulative two hours of rain interruptions spread over two major breaks in the action.
The title marks the fifth at the Masters 1000 level for Murray, all of them on hard-court. The Scot now has one trophy this season, the same as Aussie Open champion Federer.
“It’s so tough closing out a math against Roger,” said Murray, winner of a 15th career trophy. “It was incredibly difficult conditions for both of us.
“The rain did not help but going into the dressing room gave me time to think. It was really tough but I came through in the end.” Federer failed to get off to the rocket start that he had in his previous two matches, both of them tight until the end.
The Swiss will still move up a notch to second in the world in Monday’s rankings behind Rafael Nadal. Murray becomes only the fifth different player to have beaten both Nadal and Federer in the same event.
He now stands 7-5 against Federer. “It’s the first time I’ve had the chance to win against Roger in the final and I hope to be able to do it again,” said the Scot.
The first rain drops fell just as the players walked onto court, but play was possible for more than an hour prior to a major interruption early in the second set.
In that period, Murray broke twice to start the match, while Federer clawed one back in the fourth game to get onto the scoreboard.
Murray hung tough but failed to serve out the set with a 5-3 lead; he corrected that misstep with a break of the Swiss for 6-5 and concluded the 7-5 result a game later.
The second set rain interruption in the fourth game lasted almost an hour, as did one in the sixth game.
The players finally got back onto court in calm conditions, as Federer looked ready to mount a fightback.
Murray had other intentions, breaking again in the 11th game from Federer’s volley wide. A game later it was over after the Swiss saved a match point but put a return long on a second.
Keywords: Rogers Cup