David Goffin has played in 11 ATP finals so far in a career and the only one on grass came in 2015 when he lost to Nicolas Mahut, hoping for another good run this week following a great start. The Belgian defeated former junior Wimbledon champion Alejandro Davidovich Fokina who qualified for the main draw 6-0, 6-2 in 48 minutes, dominates from start to finish for one of his most impressive wins in the last 17 months or so.
David dropped six points behind the initial shot, never facing a break point and mounting the pressure on the other side of the net to leave the youngster far behind. Davidovich Fokina served at 76% and that brought him nothing, playing against ten break chances and suffering five breaks to propel the Belgian into the last 16.
David needed only 18 minutes to claim the first set 6-0, breaking in game two and moving 4-0 up with a backhand return winner. Another backhand winner sealed the opener for the 5th seed in game six, with the opportunity to extend the streak while creating three break points in the second game of the second set.
Alejandro fought them off to add his name to the scoreboard, only to hit a double fault in game four to push David 3-1 up before the Belgian clinched the triumph with another break in game eight after a forehand winner, happy with the way he performed in the opening match of the tournament.
Nicolas Jarry defeated the young Italian Jannik Sinner 7-6, 6-3 in an hour and 21 minutes, firing ten aces and saving one out of three break points. Sinner fought well in the opening set, taking 12 of the first 15 points for a 3-0 advantage before Nicolas broke back in game five, controlling the pace in the tie break to win it 7-4.
Trading breaks in games two and three of set number two, the rivals stayed neck and neck for some time before Jarry grabbed four of the last five games for only the second ATP win on grass. Mikhail Kukushkin delivered the 12th victory on the fastest surface, outplaying Lorenzo Sonego 5-7, 6-4, 6-4 in two hours and seven minutes, taking two points more than his rival.
After losing the opening set, Mikhail found the range on serve, dropping just 14 points behind the initial shot by the end of the match and breaking Lorenzo once in each of those sets for a winning start. The 8th seed and the defending champion Richard Gasquet barely escaped an early exit, ousting Aljaz Bedene 6-7, 7-6, 6-4 in just under two and a half hours, earning three points more than the Slovenian who hit 21 aces.
Aljaz fended off eight out of 12 break points and converted all three opportunities on the return to stay in touch all the time, having a set and a break lead and standing two points away from the finish line at 5-5 in the second set tie break.
Richard strayed calm to steal the set and dominate in the decider for the fourth win of the season that had been plagued with a groin injury that required surgery. Andreas Seppi prevailed against a lucky loser Thomas Fabbiano 7-6, 7-5 in an hour and 57 minutes, trailing 4-2 in the first set and repelling two set points in a roller coaster tie break that he won 12-10.
From 3-1 up in the second, the younger Italian lost six of the next eight games, squandering the advantage and pushing the veteran over the finish line in straight sets. Pierre-Hugues Herbert fired 13 aces against Matthew Ebden in a 6-4, 7-5 victory in an hour and 22 minutes, providing a late break in both sets to book his place in the next round.
Adrian Mannarino had an easy day at the office versus Thiemo de Bakker, marching over the finish line with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph in 59 minutes after giving away only nine points on serve, never facing a break point and converting nine out of 13 on the other hand to control the scoreboard all the time and stay on title trail.