Coco Gauff Wins First WTA 1000 Title | She’s Not The One Being Touted As Next Serena, But She’s Hot As US Open Approaches

Nineteen-year-old Cori “Coco” Gauff won her first WTA 1000 title at Cincinnati on Sunday, defeating Karolina Muchova 6-3, 6-4 in the final. Gauff became the youngest woman ever to win the top-tier event and improved to 11-1 this summer as we head to the year’s final Grand Slam, the US Open. Can she win it?

The Summer Of Coco Continues

After losing in the first round of Wimbledon earlier this summer, it was starting to look bleak for the teenage phenom.

But like many elite athletes, she doubled down on work, added Brad Gilbert and Pere Riba as coaches, and she’s had the most consistent run in her young career.

Gauff won the DC Open earlier this month and didn’t drop a set. It was her first WTA 500 title and at the time her biggest. The following week she headed to Montreal for the WTA 1000 event and advanced to the quarterfinals where she lost to good friend, doubles partner, and eventual champion world No. 3 Jessica Pegula.

That loss is the only one she’s suffered since Wimbledon.

In Cincinnati she took down world No. 1 Iga Swiatek for the first-time in eight tries in a tough three-set semifinal 7-6 (7), 3-6, 6-4. The win over Muchova in the final bumped Gauff up a spot to world No. 6 and she is one of the favorites heading into the US Open.

A Great Partnership

The influence of her new coaches has really made a positive impact. Both Gilbert and Riba laud her maturity, talent, and commitment, and she recognizes what she has in them as well.

“Just a lot of wisdom and how to play the points, and just the mental side of the game,” Gauff said of Gilbert. “How to approach these matches in these big situations. I think he’s one of the best tennis minds out there. I’m sure you guys all have seen him commentate on ESPN and give his advice. He’s just making me be serious, but all enjoying the game and having a lot of fun, and be really thriving and being excited for those tough matchups. And just taking every point, being physical every point – and I think that’s the best advice he’s given me in such a short amount of time.”

Gauff is the hottest player on the WTA and she along with Swiatek, Pegula, Aryna Sabalenka, and Elena Rybakina are the betting favorites to hoist the US Open trophy in a few weeks.

Right now, Gauff is still the leading candidate to take the Black Girl Magic mantle in tennis, but there’s another young, Black tennis player that is being compared to Serena Williams.

A Grand Slam brings a different kind of pressure from a regular tour event, even a 1000 series event. For two weeks a player must navigate nerves, poor play, bad luck, weather conditions, etc. and survive and advance.

Gauff has played in a Grand Slam final (French 2022) and made the quarterfinals at last year’s US Open. She will have the crowd on her side in most, if not all, of her matches. If she can handle the big points, stay mentally tough when down a break or when things aren’t clicking she’s got a very good chance to claim her first major singles title.

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