David Goffin stuns Roger Federer in semi-final — ATP Finals
19 November, 2017, 02:41 | Author: Lydia Fleming
A set up against a man he'd never lost to, Roger Federer looked to be cruising toward a shot at a seventh ATP Finals title.
David Goffin got a chance to experience the ATP Finals action past year when he stepped in after Gael Monfils was forced to withdraw, and 12 months later he came as a regular competitor of the elite ATP event, occupying the 8th place in the ATP rankings.
The Belgian rallied in the semifinals on Saturday to claim the biggest win of his career and stun the favorite 2-6, 6-3, 6-4. It paid off. I started to serve well.
Goffin will face Grigor Dimitrov after the 26-year-old fought to a three set 4-6, 6-0, 6-3 victory over Jack Sock in the Pete Sampras semifinal.
The six-time champion will head into Saturday's semi-final match as the favourite after having beaten Goffin in their six career meetings so far.
The second set was on serve until, at 4-5, Cilic netted a forehand to give Federer a set point which the Swiss converted. Goffin produced a forehand passing shot to take his first break point of the match. A shot through the legs by Sock in the fourth game - be it laziness or his "showtime" alter ego it isn't quite clear - either way it looked as though Sock was losing his focus and fell quickly to 4-0 down in the second. "I had I think multiple game chances to get out of the game and go 1-1, keep the pressure up".
The winners flowed from Goffin's racket, unsettling Federer, who coughed up uncharacteristic errors. In the second, I had some opportunities to come back, to break back, but he was really solid.
It was testament to the remarkable season Federer has put together that his loss came as such a major surprise.
REUTERSDominic Thiem is out of the ATP World Tour Finals
"Obviously, when you sneak into the eighth spot the week before, three days before the event starts, it definitely takes some nerves away", the 25-year-old said. "I will try to do my best to play a better match than in Basel", Goffin said.
With Rafael Nadal withdrawing after his defeat to Goffin, only Marin Cilic and Thiem had qualified for the tournament in previous years, and both were eliminated at the Round Robin stage this time around.
"It was the first time against Rafa".
When asked if he thought his opponent "choked" at the end, Sock said: "You never know".
Dimitrov is the first debutant to reach the final since David Ferrer in 2007.
'Dimitrov has played some incredible tennis and had an fantastic 2017 so I will have to play some of my best tennis to win'.
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