» Sports » Wawrinka to start Chennai Open defense against Croat teen Coric

Wawrinka to start Chennai Open defense against Croat teen Coric

December 23, 2015 14:00 IST

Stanislas Wawrinka arrives for a practice session

IMAGE: Stanislas Wawrinka arrives for a practice session. Photograph: Wayne Taylor/Getty Images

Stan Wawrinka will begin his title defense at the Chennai Open facing off against Croatian teenager Borna Coric.

The French Open champion, will open his bid for a third straight title in the Tamil Nadu capital (and fourth overall), against a player he beat in straight sets en route to the title last year. 

The 19-year old Coric, who will be participating in Chennai for the second year in a row, vividly remembers the loss to the world no. 4 last year.

"I had a tough second round against Wawrinka in 2015, losing to him in straight sets," said Coric. 

The world No. 44, the US Open junior champion in 2013, stunned Andy Murray in straight sets in the quarter-finals at Dubai this year. He reached a career high ranking of 33 in July.

Meanwhile, Wawrinka has, in the last two years, used Chennai as the starting board for major success. In 2014, he followed up his title triumph in the southern city with a first major win - at the Australian Open.

And this year, he ended Novak Djokovic's bid for that elusive French Open title. 

The Swiss also won titles in Rotterdam and Tokyo this year. 

Having lost six of his first seven career finals on the ATP Tour, Wawrinka has won the last seven he has contested.