5 Things To Know About Cori Gauff, The 15-Year-Old Wonder-Child Who Beat Venus Williams At Wimbledon
Cori Gauff just managed to take down her inspiration, Venus Williams, in her first match ever at Wimbledon.
July 01, 2019 at 7:28 pm
Cori "Coco" Gauff, a 15-year-old Black girl from Atlanta, found a way to take down one of her idols in her first match at Wimbledon.
Gauff is the youngest person ever to qualify for a Wimbledon match during the Open era. Making the most of the moment, she managed to beat Venus Williams on Monday in straight 6-4, 6-4 sets. Here are five things you need to know about the tennis history maker.
1) She's Already Secured A Number Of Firsts Throughout Her Short Career
Gauff has consistently been the youngest champion through each level of the tennis circuit since she started playing at around age 8.
She was the youngest winner of the USTA Clay Court National 12-under title at 10 years old and the youngest girl to make it to a U.S. Open girl’s final at 13.
The youngest player ever to QUALIFY for Wimbledon ✔️
The youngest player ever to WIN a match at Wimbledon ✔️
— Eurosport UK (@Eurosport_UK) July 1, 2019
At just 15 years old, she became the youngest woman ever to qualify for a Wimbledon match during the Open era. Now, she has become the youngest to win a Wimbledon match since 1991. This year, she also became the youngest woman to win a French Open qualifying match.
2) She Just Beat Her Idol
In interviews before the match and in a lengthy profile by ESPN in 2017, Gauff and her parents credited Venus and Serena Williams for inspiring her to play tennis.
Gauff managed to meet Serena after winning a tournament and has already started to work with one of her coaches.
“I told her thank you for everything that you did. I wouldn’t be here without you. I always wanted to tell her that,” she said in a post-match interview according to The New York Times.
3) She Was Raised By Athletes
Gauff was raised in Atlanta, but her family moved to Florida to support her burgeoning tennis career. Her father, Corey, played point guard for Georgia State University and her mother, Candi, was a Florida State University track star.
Her parents immediately noticed her unusually long wingspan, and she initially took to tennis because she liked the skirts. Her skills improved rapidly with coaching from her father and other experts.
4) She's Already Secured Millions In Sponsorships
She may be new to us, but tennis scouts have been saying for years that she was one of the next great prospects. Gauff is just a freshman in high school but has already been signed to TEAM8, a sports management agency owned by tennis legend Roger Federer.
She has sponsorships with Barilla, New Balance and tennis equipment maker, Head. New Balance pulled off a deal with Gauff after a lengthy and costly battle with Nike.
Those three endorsements will allow her to make about $1 million this year, and her star will only rise quicker after today's win. Companies are clamoring for a tennis successor to Venus and Serena Williams, hoping Gauff and others like Sloane Stephens can fill the void.
5) She Has A Tough Road Ahead
She can only bask in the glory of her win over Venus for a few moments before she has to prepare for her next match against Magdalena Rybarikova.
After Wimbledon, Gauff still can't fully devote herself to tennis. Rules limit 15-year-old athletes from playing in more than 10 tournaments per year, so she will have to wait a few years before she can play full-time.
She even joked with ESPN that she had to take a science test the night before her match with Venus.