Andy Murray came through one of the most extraordinary tie breaks of modern times to overcome Philipp Kohlschreiber in the Dubai Duty Free tournament.
Pouille needed three match points to defeat Russian qualifier Evgeny Donskoy 6-4, 5-7, 7-6 (2).
And so it continued, with more errors from Murray and a third straight break, before Verdasco settled briefly into his rhythm with a cracking backhand victor and hold with a 130mph ace.
The key to winning matches against the elite players in professional tennis is not only emphasising the strengths in your game, but also getting the absolute best out of the weaknesses on the match-court.
"It's been quite a few late finishes this week".
"This week has given me great momentum which I hope to use going to Indian Wells and Miami".
Murray, 29, claimed the trophy in the emirate after finishing runner-up to Roger Federer in 2012.
It is Murray's 45th career championship. "I'm really happy to be in the final, and will try to recover and to be as ready as possible for tomorrow". "He's had a pretty good start to the year", Murray said of Verdasco.
"The first set was very important to win after how the matches went yesterday".
Murray now has 12,040 points to Djokovic's 9,825. He held at 15 for 4-3.
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Murray struck again in the seventh game of the set to all but seal the victory.
But Murray will be delighted especially after coming through a testing opening period that saw him lose three of the opening four games.
An energized Murray turned the match around reeling off nine consecutive points to close the 39-minute opener.
"It's been a good start to the year".
"He's number one in the world right now".
"Obviously, I have maybe the toughest opponent". It was obviously a really hard final to win, but I came trying everything and giving everything.
The stress seemed to be getting to Verdasco now, as he chopped and changed rackets, raised his shoulders in disbelief at his own errors-an easy netted volley stood out-and Murray pounced.
Murray continued in the same vein in the second set and slowly began to dictate from the baseline on the back of an improved serve to open up a 3-1 lead which he did not relinquish.
Fans booking corporate hospitality for The Championships, Wimbledon may be hoping Murray can now push on to win the tournament, which would be the first this year after a mixed start.