LONDON: As if clocking up a first victory over Rafael Nadal was not enough, David Goffin continued breaking new ground by stunning Roger Federer at the ATP Finals yesterday to claim the biggest win of his career and reach the final.
Few gave the willowy world number eight a prayer against the Swiss maestro who had rolled through his round-robin matches unbeaten for the 10th time. Yet Goffin, beaten in all six prior meetings with Federer, turned the tables to claim a 2-6 6-3 6-4 victory.
His comeback win means a new name will be on the trophy this year with fellow first-time qualifiers for the elite event Grigor Dimitrov and Jack Sock contesting the second semi-final.
Fellow debutants Grigor Dimitrov and Jack Sock were to contest the second semi-final later in the day.
“Both are really special. It was the first time against Rafa. Then the semi-final, to beat Roger for the first time here in such a big event, big tournament, it was the perfect moment,” Goffin, who beat a physically-struggling Nadal on Monday, said. “It is the win of my career, for sure.”
Goffin sustained a freak injury at this year’s French Open when tripping on a court cover and rolling his ankle, then missed Wimbledon to recover.
He is enjoying a dream end to 2017 which will conclude when he leads Belgium in the Davis Cup final against France in Lille.
Yesterday, it appeared he would have an extra day to prepare for national duty as he was outclassed by Federer in the opening set – the 36-year-old world number two feasting on the elegant Goffin’s steady, medium-pace game.