World number two and defending champion Novak Djokovic captured his second ATP title of the year at the China Open today with an easy 6-2, 6-4 win over Spain's David Ferrer in a rain-delayed final.
The 23-year-old Serb, the top seed in Beijing, led the Spaniard 3-1 in the first set on Sunday when play was suspended at the Olympic Green Tennis Centre due to heavy rain, forcing the players to come back for a second day.
Djokovic seemed energised by the bright sunshine, picking up where he left off to quickly wrap up the first set as the speedy Ferrer made a number of ill-timed unforced errors from the backcourt. The 28-year-old Spaniard, the eighth seed, mounted a spirited challenge in the second, breaking Djokovic to go up 3-2 and then consolidating the break.
But the Serb roared back, repeatedly pressuring Ferrer on his serve with long baseline rallies until he cracked, bringing the score to 4-4. Djokovic then went into cruise control, holding his serve at love and punishing Ferrer with his powerful forehand in the final game.
He closed out the win when Ferrer dumped a backhand into the net on the second match point. Both Djokovic and Ferrer will head directly from Beijing to Shanghai for the Masters event, with the Spaniard scheduled to play his first match there on Tuesday and Djokovic due back on court on Wednesday.
The China Open women's final between top seed Caroline Wozniacki and second seed Vera Zvonareva will be played at 7:30 pm (1130 GMT) on Monday. That will be a grudge match for the 20-year-old Dane, who lost to the Russian in the semi-finals at the US Open a month ago. Wozniacki will take over the world number one ranking when the WTA releases its new list later Monday on the back of her performance in Beijing, dethroning American superstar Serena Williams. Zvonareva is projected to take the number three spot behind Williams, no matter who wins the China Open final.