Coco Gauff - US Open 2023

Coco Gauff thanks ‘people who didn’t believe’ in her following US Open triumph

Coco Gauff has claimed her maiden Grand Slam title after fighting back to beat the incoming world No.1 Aryna Sabalenka.

Gauff beat the Belarusian, 2-6 6-3 6-2, in just over two hours to become the first American teenager to win the US Open title since her idol Serena Williams back in 1999.

By doing so, Gauff completes an impressive American hardcourt swing that has seen her win 18 of her last 19 matches.

The 19-year-old has won three of her seven matches in New York from a set down, and is only the second woman since 2000 to win the US Open singles final from a set down.

Gauff spoke about her fighting spirit after the match, as well as praising her opponent, “I just knew that if I didn’t give it my all, then I would have no shot at winning.

“Aryna is an incredible, incredible player. Congratulations on the No.1 ranking. It’s well-deserved. I always tell my team all the time that you’re a real nice person behind the scenes and the the competitiveness and that fire that you bring is what makes sports better.”

Gauff arrived on the WTA tour as a 15-year-old, when she famously beat Venus Williams in the first round of Wimbledon.

And despite remaining in the top-10 for a year now, Gauff revealed that she has naysayers that she dedicated part of her post-match speech to.

“Thank you to the people who didn’t believe in me,” said Gauff. “A month ago, I won a [WTA] 500 title, people were saying I would stop at that. Two weeks ago I won a Masters title, and people said that was as big as it was going to get.

“Three weeks later I’m here with this trophy now. To those who thought they were putting water on my fire, they were adding gas to it. Now I’m burning so bright now.”

Following her incredible two weeks in New York, Gauff has confirmed her qualification to the WTA Finals in Cancun, in both singles and doubles.

Gauff will also rise to a new career-high ranking in both disciplines, No.3 in singles and will share the No.1 ranking in doubles with her partner Jessica Pegula.

Coco Gauff and her incredible American hardcourt summer

After being knocked out in the first round of Wimbledon, Coco Gauff made some changes to her coaching setup that included bringing in the former coach of Andre Agassi, Brad Gilbert.

Since then, she has taken the WTA tour by storm:

Win-loss record since Wimbledon: 18-1 (95%)

Washington D.C. (WTA 500)

First Round – Received a bye

Second Round – Beat Hailey Baptiste (Q), 6-1 6-4

Quarter-final – Beat Belinda Bencic (6), 6-1 6-2

Semi-final – Beat Liudmila Samsonova (8), 6-3 6-3

Final – Beat Maria Sakkari (4), 6-2 6-3

Montreal (WTA 1000)

First Round – Received a bye

Second Round – Beat Katie Boulter (Q), 6-2 6-2

Third Round – Beat Marketa Vondrousova (9), 6-3 6-0

Quarter-final – Lost to Jessica Pegula (4), 2-6 7-5 5-7

Cincinnati (WTA 1000)

First Round – Received a bye

Second Round – Beat Mayar Sherif, 6-2 6-2

Third Round – Beat Linda Noskova, 6-4 6-0

Quarter-final – Beat Jasmine Paolini, 6-3 6-2

Semi-final – Beat Iga Swiatek (1), 7-6(2) 3-6 6-4

Final – Beat Karolina Muchova, 6-3 6-4

US Open

First Round – Beat Laura Siegemund (Q), 3-6 6-2 6-4

Second Round – Beat Mirra Andreeva, 6-3 6-2

Third Round – Beat Elise Mertens (32), 3-6 6-3 6-0

Fourth Round – Beat Caroline Wozniacki (WC), 6-3 3-6 6-1

Quarter-final – Beat Jelena Ostapenko (20), 6-0 6-2

Semi-final – Beat Karolina Muchova (10), 6-4 7-5

Final – Beat Aryna Sabalenka (2), 2-6 6-3 6-2

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.