Unless you’ve been under a rock, then you should already know about the 17-year-old tennis pro that is out here making history! (again)
At just 15 years old, Cori “CoCo” Gauff was named the youngest player to ever qualify for Wimbledon and then went on to defeat one of her idols, Venus Williams 6-4, 6-4 in that same competition.
After defeating Venus, Gauff told BBC: “I don”t really know how to feel, this is the first time I’ve cried after a match, after winning.” In a video posted by Wimbledon’s YouTube page, Gauff called Venus and Serena Williams some of her idols. “Not many people get to play Wimbledon at 15,” she said. “…and we’ll see where this goes.”
Fast forward to 2021, Gauff is now the youngest American player to advance to a Grand Slam quarterfinal after defeating Ons Jabeur 6-3, 6-1 in just 53 minutes at the French Open. Gauff is the youngest American player to advance to the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam since Venus Williams in 1997, who was also 17 at the time. (crazy how things come full circle right?)
Although Gauff’s young age has been causing quite a stir in the tennis circuit, Gauff herself has been unphased.
“I don’t really care if you guys talk about my age or not. I’m 17. That’s the truth,” Gauff told reporters during a post-match conference. “I promise you my opponents don’t care about how old I am. They want to beat me just as bad regardless of my age, and I want to beat them just as bad regardless of their age. I’m only going to be 17 once, so you might as well talk about it while I’m 17!”
With this recent win, Gauff is in line to accomplish yet another career-making achievement and is also qualified for the U.S. Olympics tennis team. Gauff, along with Sofia Kenin, Serena Williams, and Jennifer Brady are all set to represent the U.S at this year’s Olympics, which is set to compete in Tokyo later this summer. Gauff would be the youngest Olympic tennis player since 2000.