David Goffin is the World No. 11 on the ATP Tour heading into the 2017 season. He enjoyed some success over the last several days in Abu Dhabi, an exhibition tournament where he beat Andy Murray. The Belgian player ultimately lost to Rafael Nadal in the final, however Goffin may still be a player to watch a bit in 2017.

The lost generation on tour

At the age of 26, Goffin is a part of the lost generation of men's tennis. He, Milos Raonic, Kei Nishikori, and Grigor Dimitrov are four players currently aged 25-27-years-old that are each famous in their own right. However, none of them have fully supplanted the elder players from the Big Four era.

Even Raonic, who is currently ranked No. 3 remains behind both Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

That Nadal beat Raonic and Goffin in Abu Dhabi is a case in point about the lost generation: the elder veterans on tour have generally been able to keep the younger players out of the big matches or at least as the runner-ups in the big matches. That's a trend that can't continue indefinitely, but it is an interesting time frame right now where no one younger than 29-years-old is a clear candidate to enter the all-time great debate in the years ahead, even if you were dealing with a very lengthy list. However, if you included a long list then most would submit Murray, Roger Federer, Nadal, and Novak Djokovic as candidates with the latter three even making short lists.

What will Goffin do in the majors?

Goffin is starting to fill out a little and I think that might help him out on the clay-court surface the most. He did well at Roland Garros last season, before losing to Dominic Thiem. If Goffin is to do some damage in 2017, I think that it would be at Wimbledon or in one of the hard-court Grand Slams.

It shouldn't be too long before Goffin posts regular wins over players like Richard Gasquet, Spaniard David Ferrer, Tomas Berdych, Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and maybe even Stan Wawrinka.

I think Goffin will play better than his ranking at the upcoming Australian Open with a run to the quarterfinals a good guess for the Belgian.

I wouldn't be surprised if he did similarly well in two of three majors for the balance of the season. However, the win in Abu Dhabi over Murray isn't something too convincing simply because the match was exhibition. While I'm thinking Goffin adds some hardware in 2017 to his piddly title count (it's only at 2), I'm also thinking those additions will come from 250-level events. Heading into the season, Goffin does not seem like the player to break the dominance of the established veterans, and I don't think he'll be in a Grand Slam final this season.

Don't miss our page on Facebook!