How on earth is this only Stan Wawrinka's second career title? That totally blows my mind. Stan is such an awesome player that this just seems so... weird to me.
And it's been a good few years since his first title - that was Umag 2006, if I remember correctly, where he defeated one Novak Djokovic. Since then he's lost five finals, in a case of what I like to call 'Stosuritis' - but here he is, on debut in Casablanca, winning.
Winning, I would like to point out, in the first real clay tournament of the year - the first one that matters, anyway, on account of how we are actually building up to something (i.e. Roland Garros). Not that I think Stan is going to go on and win the French Open or anything... but I think we could be looking at a good run from Stan this dirtball season. Unlike Chela's win, I think this win actually means something.
This said, Victor Hanescu is not the biggest baddest opponent in the world - still, he was the third seed here and a very creditable dirtballer. Stan's going to have to face much bigger and meaner claycourters in the rest of the season... but you know what? when Stan plays well, it takes someone who is really, really awesome to stop him. Look at his run at Wimbledon last year, where he just got edged out by Andy Murray.
I have a hunch. I have an inkling. And my inkling says that this year's claycourt season is going to be a very good one for Stan Wawrinka.
Roger: older and not quite out
6 months ago