Roberto Bautista Agut captures his first Doha title

Always in top-form on week-1, Roberto Bautista Agut delivers a command performance in Doha

This is a week Roberto Bautista Agut will always remember. Ranked World #24 to start the season, he came into the Qatar ExxonMobil Open as the 7-seed.

In the Quarterfinals, he eliminated Stan Wawrinka – who’s back in Grand Slam shape after a dodgy 2018 spent acclimating to a surgically enhanced knee.

In the Semifinals – down a set and a break – Roberto came-back to outplay and outlast World #1 Novak Djokovic.

And in the Championship match, he scored a deciding-set victory over 2-time Doha Finalist Tomas Berdych.

The Spaniard was an absolute machine all week.

During the Djokovic Semifinal, Roberto essentially lost set-1 before the first changeover. But he endured, extended rallies and refused to cave.

In set-2, Novak broke to go up 4-3, but Bautista Agut found another gear and responded with a break of his own. Knowing he was up against a relentless opponent with ridiculous conditioning, Djokovic shattered his racquet on the baseline and spent a few minutes cleaning up the pieces with a towel.

Roberto then forced a decider with an 8-6 tiebreak victory – broke the World #1 in game-1 of set-3 – and held serve the rest of the way. Down the stretch, Bautista Agut was simply the fitter opponent, both physically and mentally – something not often heard when comparing others to Djokovic.

Of his two career victories over a top-ranked Novak Djokovic (Bautista Agut also defeated Djokovic -01- in the Semifinals of the 2016 Shanghai Masters 64 64), this Doha Semifinal was his crowning achievement.

How good is Roberto Bautista Agut during the first month of the season? This was his 4th career title in January and 5th career January Final. Last year, the 2-time Auckland champ defeated Juan Martin Del Potro to capture the title. In 2017, he won Chennai, four years after reaching his first career ATP Tour Final there. Bautista Agut now owns 9-titles and is a 16-time Tour-level Finalist.

His 9th title is one he’ll never forget.

Round of 16. Match Recaps and Player Introductions on Center Court

Round 1. Match Recaps and Player Introductions on Center Court

The 2019 Draw Ceremony and Qualifying Updates

Past Champions. Qatar ExxonMobil Open

Singles Champions

2019 Roberto Bautista Agut

2018 Gael Monfils

2017 Novak Djokovic (2)

2016 Novak Djokovic

2015 David Ferrer

2014 Rafael Nadal

2013 Richard Gasquet

2012 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

2011 Roger Federer (3)

2010 Nikolay Davydenko

2009 Andy Murray (2)

2008 Andy Murray

2007 Ivan Ljubičić

2006 Roger Federer (2)

2005 Roger Federer

2004 Nicolas Escudé

2003 Stefan Koubek

2002 Younes El Aynaoui

2001 Marcelo Ríos

2000 Fabrice Santoro

1999 Rainer Schüttler

1998 Petr Korda (2)

1997 Jim Courier

1996 Petr Korda

1995 Stefan Edberg (2)

1994 Stefan Edberg

1993 Boris Becker

Doubles Champions

2019 David Goffin / Pierre-Hugues Herbert

2018 Oliver Marach / Mate Pavić

2017 Jérémy Chardy / Fabrice Martin

2016 Feliciano López / Marc López (3)

2015 Juan Mónaco / Rafael Nadal (4)

2014 Tomáš Berdych / Jan Hájek

2013 Christopher Kas / Philipp Kohlschreiber (2)

2012 Filip Polášek / Lukáš Rosol

2011 Marc López (2) / Rafael Nadal (3)

2010 Guillermo García-López / Albert Montañés

2009 Marc López / Rafael Nadal (2)

2008 Philipp Kohlschreiber / David Škoch

2007 Nenad Zimonjić / Mikhail Youzhny

2006 Jonas Björkman / Max Mirnyi (2)

2005 Albert Costa / Rafael Nadal

2004 Martin Damm (2) / Cyril Suk (2)

2003 Martin Damm / Cyril Suk

2002 Donald Johnson / Jared Palmer (2)

2001 Mark Knowles (3) / Daniel Nestor (2)

2000 Mark Knowles (2) / Max Mirnyi

1999 Alex O’Brien / Jared Palmer

1998 Mahesh Bhupathi / Leander Paes

1997 Jacco Eltingh / Paul Haarhuis

1996 Mark Knowles / Daniel Nestor

1995 Stefan Edberg / Magnus Larsson

1994 Olivier Delaître / Stéphane Simian

1993 Boris Becker / Patrik Kühnen