Wawrinka. Stanislas Wawrinka.
The Australian Open trophy is in the hands a player who has beaten the no.1 and no.2 seeds for the first time in a grand slam since 1993, to lift his richly deserved trophy.
Stan or Stanislas as he is known on the tennis court is now a first time grand slam winner after beating Rafael Nadal in four sets to claim the Australian Open title.
His 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 victory was met with thunderous applause among the spectators as well as tennis legend, Pete Sampras who spoke highly of the hard working Swiss.
“I think the right person won. He played great. He’s got a big serve, moves well and has a good touch at the net – he’s the real deal,” said Sampras.
Unfortunately, the final was not the epic showcase of the previous year, where Nadal was on the losing again to Novak Djokovic in an epic five set thriller.
This time it was different. Nadal had back problems, was booed by the crowd and looked a tired man.
Wawrinka (28) took full advantage and continued to display the form that took him to the final. A combination of powerful serves and high paced backhands outwitted his fatigued opponent.
Only time will tell if a change of the guard is taking place. For the moment Wawrinka is just celebrating his triumph.
“I never dreamt about that, because, for me, I was not good enough to beat those [top] guys. I still think I’m dreaming.
‘It’s a strange feeling. I saw so many finals. I always try to watch the final of grand slams because that’s where the best players are playing.”
Now Wawrinka is one of these best players.
The Swiss tennis player, who has always been in the shadow of his compatriot and good friend Roger Federer has now stepped up to the big leagues.
Can he continue his form throughout the calender year?
His tattoo on his left forearm, a quote by Irish playwright William Beckett, seems to point to the importance of failure to achieve the highest success.
‘Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.’
And now Stan is the better man.
Wawrinka’s best shots