Dimitrov overcomes gutsy Goffin to win ATP Finals
Grigor Dimitrov produced a second victory of the week against David Goffin to win the season-ending ATP Finals for the first time in his career on Sunday.
Dimitrov, who cruised to a 6-0 6-2 win against Goffin in the group stage, was made to work harder on this occasion and triumphed 7-5 4-6 6-3 to claim his biggest title to date.
This year's Finals have lacked the star power of previous editions, with the likes of Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray taking time away from the sport and Rafael Nadal having to pull out injured.
Roger Federer, meanwhile, was knocked out in the semi-finals by Goffin, but the seventh seed could not repeat that performance in the decider at the O2 Arena in London.
World number six Dimitrov’s second serve troubled him early on, losing all four of such points in an opening game that went Goffin's way.
Although Dimitrov - making his first appearance at this event in 2017 - broke straight back, Goffin raced into a 40-0 lead on his way to restoring his advantage by winning the next.
Dimitrov had to wait until the eighth game to break back for a second time and a tight set then ended with a fiercely fought battle, the Bulgarian converting his fifth set point on the Goffin serve to prevent a tie-break.
After an hour-long opening set, the two players matched each other in the second until the Belgian broke for 4-3 having survived a break point in the previous game.
That break ultimately gave Goffin the chance to serve for the set – an opportunity he grasped without conceding a point.
Dimitrov had the lion's share of support in the arena and his fans sensed the end was close when Goffin sent a backhand wide to put their man 4-2 in front in the deciding set.
Goffin was left serving for survival at 5-3 down and clawed his way back from 40-0 down to stay alive in an enthralling encounter, but a tired backhand into the net gifted Dimitrov the title in the next game.
Dimitrov  bt Goffin  7-5 4-6 6-3
Dimitrov – 20/27
Goffin – 36/38
Goffin – 10/5
BREAK POINTS WON
Dimitrov - 4/15
FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Dimitrov – 65
Goffin – 50
PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Dimitrov – 70/50
Goffin – 78/42
Dimitrov - 108