‘Failing better’ is Stanislas Wawrinka’s motto but he may have to get used to seeing himself as a winner after beating Rafael Nadal in the Australian Open final.
A back injury sustained by world number one Nadal dominated the match but nothing could take the shine off 28-year-old Wawrinka’s first grand slam title.
Long overshadowed by compatriot Roger Federer, who was one of the first people to call with congratulations, he will move to No 3 in the world rankings on Monday and become Swiss number one for the first time.
It will take some adjusting to for Wawrinka, whose arm displays the words of Samuel Beckett: “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.’’
After the 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-3 victory, Wawrinka said: “Before today, I always said that except Roger, Rafa, Novak (Djokovic), you always lose, every week. It’s tough to take a positive from failing at a tournament.
“That’s how I see, in general, my career. I always go back to the court, I always go back to practise to try to improve myself and to give me the best chance to beat the best players in the world.
“I will need time to realise what I did in these two weeks. Because at the end, even if Rafa was injured, I think I deserved that grand slam because I won against Djokovic, I won against Rafa. I did an amazing two weeks and I was playing my best tennis ever.”