15-Year-Old Tennis Prodigy Cori Gauff Reaches First WTA Quarter-Final
Florida resident, a schoolgirl Cori Gauff has been touted as the next Serena Williams. Interestingly, the 15-year-old kept up the form to reach her maiden WTA quarter-final on Wednesday, securing a place in the world top 100 for the first time. The American tennis prodigy is the youngest player to reach the last-eight at a WTA event since Sesil Karatancheva made the quarter-finals at the Gold Coast in January 2005. Gauff recorded the feat aged 15 years and 214 days wherein Sesil was 15 years and 153 days.
“I know her, oh wow,” an electrifying Gauff told wtatennis.com. “It’s a good accomplishment, and hopefully I can continue to push that to the semi-finals. “I guess that I’m used to being the youngest to do a lot of things, and I hope that I can continue to do that and enjoy my youth years, because as everyone tells me, it doesn’t last long.”
- Teenage sensation Cori Gauff has reached her maiden WTA quarter-final on Wednesday, securing a place in the world top 100 for the first time.
- This Florida-based tennis prodigy is the youngest player to reach the last-eight at a WTA event since Sesil Karatancheva made the quarter-finals at the Gold Coast in January 2005.
- Gauff was at 685 in the world at the start of 2019 and is currently ranked at 110.
Gauff has been steadily winning the games since she started out pro. She was at 685 in the world at the start of 2019 and is currently ranked at 110. “It’s been a goal of mine. In January of this year, I sent a message to my friend saying I wanted to finish Top 100, and at the time I was ranked, like, 800, so it was a far-fetched goal, but I’m glad that I was able to accomplish it,” she admitted.
“My other goal was to get in the main draw of two Grand Slams, and that happened, so I’m glad that I accomplished everything that I wanted this year.”
Gauff was defeated by Tamara Korpatsch in qualifying on Monday but entered the main draw when sixth seed Maria Sakkari withdrew with a right wrist injury.
“A lot of my points came from the Slams and this tournament really pushed me inside, and it’s crazy because I’m a lucky loser… And now that this has happened, I hope to get as high as possible,” she added. “I don’t really think too much about ranking, but you have to have some stepping stones to reach for.”
Earlier Gauff was defeated by Tamara Korpatsch in qualifying on Monday but luckily entered the main draw when sixth seed Maria Sakkari withdrew due to a right wrist injury. She is playing her first WTA Tour event since losing to Naomi Osaka at the US Open. Speaking about her last-minute entry into the main draw, Gauff told a news conference, “It was very surprising because I was supposed to do a press thing today. I had practiced earlier, went back to the hotel, and then got a phone call, and was back on court 40 minutes later.”
“I didn’t know too much about my opponent; I found out a little how she plays through word of mouth, but most of it was me improvising. This is my first WTA win indoors. I live in Florida, so we don’t get a chance to play indoors that much, but I enjoy it,” she claimed.
Earlier in July this year, Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff beat Williams, a five-time Wimbledon champion. Gauff was ranked 313th worldwide, became the youngest player to compete in Wimbledon in a decade.
Gauff will next face off either top seed Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands or Belgium’s Alison Van Uytvanck for a place in the Linz semi-finals.
Feature Image Credit: The New Yorker