In 2008 and 2013, Stan Wawrinka had the opportunity to fight for the Masters 1000 crown in Rome and Madrid, losing both finals to Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal before advancing into the third in Monte Carlo in 2014. In the semis, Stan took down David Ferrer (David defeated Rafael Nadal in the quarters) 6-1, 7-6 in an hour and a half to set the clash against his compatriot Roger Federer in an all-Swiss final.
It was their 13th meeting on the Tour and the sixth victory for the Swiss, the third in a row after Oeiras and the ATP Finals previous year, dominating in the opener and bringing tight second set home in the tie break to advance into the final.
Stan lost 19 points in ten service games, fending off both break chances and keeping the pressure on Ferrer all the time. The Spaniard got broken twice in the opener, staying in touch in set number two but not being able to forge a decider, losing the breaker 7-3 to propel Wawrinka through.
The Swiss had the upper hand on the court all the time, hitting many more winners than his rival and also forcing more mistakes from Ferrer's racquet. As was expected, Stan had to spray more unforced errors but that didn't cost him much as he had the advantage on his side from start to finish.
They were neck and neck in the shortest and most extended exchanges, with Wawrinka creating the crucial buffer in the mid-range rallies where he left Ferrer far behind to celebrate victory in straight sets. Stan moved in front already in game two with a forehand winner at the net, confirming the break with a hold at 15 and landing a forehand return winner to grab another break and open a 4-0 gap.
David earned his only break chances in the next game, denied by powerful hitting from the Swiss who fended them off and brought the game home with a forehand winner to race into a 5-0 lead. In the way he played the entire set, Stan wrapped it up with a backhand winner in game seven after only 32 minutes, looking strong on the court and hoping for more of the same in set number two.
There, David saved a break chance in the first game to gain confidence, with both players serving well in the remaining games to reach a tie break, a must-winning one for the Spaniard. Wawrinka opened it with a forehand winner, landing the one from his backhand in the fourth point for another mini-break and moving 5-2 up after a perfect drop shot.
Ferrer hit a double fault to find himself 6-2 down, allowing Wawrinka to seal the deal in the tenth point and complete a marvelous performance on a gray and cold day in Monte Carlo.