By Jake Davies
- David Goffin gets his first win over Andy Murray in Mubadala World Tennis Championship
- Murray’s loses his first match as World No.1
- Murray will play Milos Raonic in the 3rd place match
ABU DHABU, UAE – Belgium’s David Goffin ends Andy Murray‘s winning streak in the Brit’s first match since ending the season as the World No. 1.
David Goffin defeats Andy Murray 7-6 (4) 6-4
In previous meetings between the two, Goffin struggled to break through Murray’s superior defence, but Goffin responded perfectly in a fantastic showing in Abu Dhabi.
Goffin took the first set through the tiebreak but fell behind in the second set. The Belgian did not go away and salvaged the break back before breaking the Murray serve from 40-0 down to win the match in straight sets.
The result is a poor one for Murray, who enjoyed incredible success against Goffin in the past. The great thing about the format in this exhibition is that Murray has the opportunity to put things right in the 3rd place match against Canada’s Milos Raonic.
Rivalry with Raonic renewed
Murray will get more answers in the build up to the 2017 season when he faces Raonic tomorrow. Raonic is one of the most improved athletes on the tour over the past twelve months and could be one of the main contenders for the majors in the coming months. After a strong finish to 2016, the Canadian is in a better place mentally. Not only is he one of the top players on tour but, more importantly, he is starting to believe he belongs with the company around him in the higher echelons of the Men’s Game. That makes him dangerous for the likes of Murray and Novak Djokovic.
If Murray was to win against Raonic it would completely help sharpen him up for the challenges in Doha. Managing to grab a Top 3 victory before his trip to the event in Doha next week would be the perfect return for the first competitive event of the season.
The most appealing part of tomorrow’s match is who wins the exchanges when Raonic moves forward to the net. It is no secret that Raonic has vastly improved his net game in the last six months, but Murray has one of the game’s greatest passing shots. The person that wins those pivotal exchanges with more regularity should come out on top and seal 3rd place in the Mubadala World Tennis Championship.
In tomorrow’s final, Goffin squares off with Rafael Nadal, who beat Raonic in a tough three-set match in the semi-final.
Murray and Raonic are scheduled at 1pm (9am GMT) with the final between Nadal and Goffin to follow.
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