David Goffin Stuns Rafael Nadal In London
Belgium’s David Goffin has stunned Tennis World Number one, Rafa Nadal, beating him in three sets in the second match in Group Pete Sampras.
Twenty-six-year-old Goffin, who turned pro in 2009, held his ground when he edged Nadal on Monday at the Nitto ATP Finals, 6-7(5), 7-6(4) 6-4.
The two hour, 38 minute match ought to have ended in the second set, but Nadal in the third set saved four match points to level the tie 1-1.
All four of Goffin’s match points in the second set came while Nadal was serving: at 4-5, 30/40 and three consecutively from 0/40, 5-6 down.
But the Spaniard stepped up each time, refusing to go down in straight sets against the seventh-seeded Goffin, who qualified for the season-ending championships for the first time.
In the first set, Goffin broke Nadal twice, including at 5-5 to give the Belgian a chance to serve out the set.
But the right-hander was broken and to a tie-break they headed, where Nadal punched a backhand into the net on set point.
Goffin also broke Nadal in the third set and never wavered as he served out the match.
In the first match of the group, Grigor Dimitrov prevailed over Dominic Thiem also in three sets.
Nadal will next meet Thiem, while Dimitrov will meet Goffin on Wednesday.
Nadal is playing in his eighth Nitto ATP Finals and is seeking his first season-ending championships title.