Tennis: Djokovic beats Federer to defend Indian Wells

Tennis: Djokovic beats Federer to defend Indian Wells
Roger Federer of Switzerland in action against Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the final during day fourteen of the BNP Paribas Open tennis at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden on March 22, 2015 in Indian Wells, California.

INDIAN WELLS, United States - Novak Djokovic defeated Roger Federer 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 6-2 to successfully defend his Indian Wells crown and claim his 50th career ATP title on Sunday.

The 27-year-old world number one from Serbia also captured his fourth Indian Wells crown and is now tied with world number two Federer for the most men's titles in the California desert.

Djokovic also raised the trophy in 2008 and 2011 at the Tennis Garden stadium.

It was another epic struggle in a long list of hardcourt battles between the two top players in the world who have met 38 times with Swiss great Federer still holding a slight 20-18 edge.

Djokovic had lost his last two matches to Federer in straight sets after beating him in last year's Wimbledon final. Djokovic also needed three sets to beat Federer in the 2014 Indian Wells title match.

The two have combined to win eight of the last 12 Indian Wells titles but this is the first time they have met in back-to-back finals.

Djokovic blasted eight aces, 26 winners and broke Federer five times in the two hour, 17 minute battle in front of a crowd of 14,000.

Federer couldn't overcome his poor serving and 43 unforced errors on Sunday.

Djokovic surpassed his coach Boris Becker (49) to become the 12th player in open era history with 50 ATP Tour titles.

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