Federer ends three-year claycourt drought with Istanbul title

  • AP, Istanbul
  • Updated: May 03, 2015 23:58 IST

Top-seeded Roger Federer claimed his 85th title Sunday with a 6-3, 7-6 (11) win over Pablo Cuevas in the final of the Istanbul Open.

The 17-time Grand Slam winner fended off strong resistance from the third-seeded Uruguayan, who saved four match points.

Cuevas, bidding for a fourth career title after impressively defeating second-seeded Grigor Dimitrov in the semifinals, received treatment on his forearm early in the second set but was able to continue.

Federer, who claimed his first title on clay since winning in Madrid in 2012, broke for a 4-3 lead in the second set but dropped his serve immediately after hitting a double fault and missing two forehands.

The Swiss continued to struggle with consistency in the tiebreaker - saving three set points - but a superb backhand volley earned Federer a fifth match point that he converted when Cuevas sent a forehand in the net.

It was Federer's third title this season following victories in Brisbane and Dubai on hard court. He was playing in his 128th final, compared to four for Cuevas - who won a title in Sao Paulo in February.

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