Novak Djokovic beat Roger Federer, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, to win the 2015 US Open. The match was delayed three hours due to rain. When it finally began, the crowd in Flushing was riled up, and the play on the court matched the atmosphere. Both competitors looked cagey, with Federer losing a tense battle of long rallies and lots of unforced errors.
Djokovic is the US Open champion for the first time since 2011. It's his third Grand Slam title of the season after winning the Australian Open and Wimbledon. He narrowly missed the Calendar Grand Slam after losing to Stan Wawrinka in the French Open final. The French Open remains the one Grand Slam he's not won.
In the first game of the match, Djokovic threatened to break Federer's serve, but the world No. 2 ultimately held. Djokovic got his break the next time up, ultimately outlasting Federer in multiple long rallies and forcing him to make mistakes with his forehand. Djokovic wanted another break to close out the set, but after failing to drive home what looked like a sure-thing backhand, Federer served up two aces and Djokovic had to serve for the set.
At the start of the next set, Federer held and forced Djokovic to defend five break point attempts. Djokovic held, but he couldn't stave off Federer in the final game. He was taken to break point four more times, ultimately faltering when Federer forced him into a backhand error to take the set, 7-5.
Tension continued to mount with the third set. At times, the late hour seemed to be getting to both players. Djokovic broke Federer in the third game, only to be broken in the next game. Federer appeared to break Djokovic back to tie the set at 5-5, but the umpire ruled a Federer backhand out and was proven correct after Federer challenged the call. Djokovic took the next two points to go up two sets to one.
Djokovic broke Federer again to open the fourth set, and from that point forward there appeared little that Federer could do to stave off the loss. Federer committed five unforced errors in that opening game alone, including a double fault. The two men held serve from there, and Federer rarely threatened. He took Djokovic to break point once in the sixth game, but Djokovic again forced Federer into mistakes. When he took the set, he promptly broke Federer in eight points to set himself to serve for the match.
To that point, Federer had committed 53 unforced errors to Djokovic's 36. Federer overcame that differential to turn in a brilliant eighth game of the fourth set, scoring three winners, including a beautiful backhand volley to break Djokovic after he had seemingly given up the match. He held, then took Djokovic to break point three times in a spectacular final game. The unforced error that ended the set and the match was a terrible anticlimax to an otherwise satisfying men's final.
The two had already met five times this season with Djokovic winning thrice, including at Wimbledon. Coming into this match, Federer was playing some of the best tennis of his career and hadn't dropped throughout the US Open.