5 things you may not know about 15-year-old Cori Gauff

5 things you may not know about 15-year-old Cori Gauff

Cori Gauff hit the headlines on day one of Wimbledon after stunning Venus Williams 6-4 6-4.

Gauff, 15, is the youngest player to come through qualifying in the Open era and is 24 years younger than Williams.

Here, PA picks out five things you may not know about the American.

Playing your idols

Cori Gauff reminds Serena Williams of her sister Venus, pictured (Nigel French/PA)
Cori Gauff reminds Serena Williams of her sister Venus, pictured (Nigel French/PA)

Gauff, who is known as Coco, was inspired to play tennis because of the Williams sisters, especially Serena. Between them, Serena and Venus had won 10 grand slam singles titles before Gauff was born.

Serena has an extra connection to Gauff through her coach, Patrick Mouratoglou, who has worked with the teenager, and Serena said: “She’s so cool. She’s a great girl. I love her dad. They’re just really cool people.”

Late opportunity

At 301 in the world rankings, Gauff was not ranked high enough to get into qualifying but she was given a wild card by Wimbledon five days before her first match. At the time she found out, she was shopping online for a dress for a gala.

Gauff is still at school and had to stay up late to take a science test at 11pm the night before her final-round qualifier. She went on to beat Greet Minnen 6-1 6-1 in less than an hour.

Star backer

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🐐

A post shared by Coco Gauff (@cocogauff) on

Gauff has been marked out for stardom for a while and is represented by the Team 8 management company, which was set up by Roger Federer and his agent Tony Godsick.

Federer said: “I’m super happy for her. I saw the last couple of games when she qualified. Obviously everybody was waiting to see what the draw was going to be like.

“It’s a great story. Coco is a nice girl, works really hard. I think she’s obviously got a wonderful future ahead of herself.”

Breaking records

The match with Venus was Gauff’s grand-slam debut in the main draw of the women’s singles but she is already used to the slam stage. She reached the showpiece of the girls’ singles at the US Open in 2017 aged just 13, making her the youngest ever finalist.

At the French Open the following year she won the title just over two months after her 14th birthday. She is the first 15-year-old to compete in the main draw at Wimbledon since Laura Robson 10 years ago.

Sporting pedigree

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Happy birthday Dad💓

A post shared by Coco Gauff (@cocogauff) on

Gauff comes from a strong sporting family. She is coached by her father Corey, who played basketball at Georgia State University. Gauff’s mother Candi, meanwhile, was a gymnast before competing in athletics at Florida State University. The family moved from Atlanta to Florida when Gauff was just seven to boost her tennis prospects.

- Press Association

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