A tennis star is born! Despite a 13-year age difference, Cori Gauff defeated her latest opponent at Wimbledon, after already knocking out tennis legend Venus Williams.
UPDATE (7/5/19, 8:50 p.m. ET): At just 15 years old, tennis player and Atlanta native Cori “Coco” Gauff defeated Slovenian native Polona Hercog, 28, on the world-famous Wimbledon court on July 5. The crowd of 15,000 onlookers was astonished and overjoyed, including Coco, who had just beat her idol Venus Williams on July 1! Coco now has to win one more match to advance to the quarterfinals at the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club.
ORIGINAL STORY: Now this is an impressive feat! 15-year-old Cori “Coco” Gauff just became the youngest player since 1991 to win in Wimbledon’s first round of the ladies’ singles outside London on July 1. And she did it by beating five time Wimbledon champ Venus Williams, 39, 6-4, 6-4 in straight sets. It was her grand slam debut and Coco couldn’t have asked for a more impressive way to break into the world of professional women’s tennis, even though she’s ranked at 313. We’ve got five things to know about Coco.
1. Coco has been a tennis star on the rise as a teen.
She wasn’t able to qualify for U.S. Tennis Association majors until she turned 15. But at age 13 she reached the U.S. Open Girls singles final and at 14-years-old she won the French Open Junior’s singles title in 2018. She was so thrilled to qualify for the main draw at Wimbledon as a 15-year-old, where she knocked out No.1 seed Aliona Bolsova 6-3, 6-4 in the qualifier rounds.
2. Coco idolizes Venus.
She told her “I wouldn’t be here without you” following her Wimbledon victory. Venus had already had four grand slam wins under her belt before Coco was born in 2004.
3. Like Venus, Coco is close to her dad.
Her dad Corey Gauff is her head coach. Before they headed onto the court in Wimbledon she was seen getting a kiss for good luck from her pops.
4. Coco has been playing tennis since she was seven-years-old.
While she grew up in Atlanta, Coco moved to Delray Beach, Florida at age seven to train with Gerard Loglo his New Generation Tennis Academy. She’s home schooled by her mom Candi, who is a former teacher.
— Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 1, 2019
5. Coco already has professional sponsorships.
In 2018 she signed a multi-year deal with New Balance shoes apparel. In March of 2019 she signed a deal with Barilla pasta company, which also sponsors Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer. She wrote in a tweet, “Excited to join the barilla family! It is a great honor to be apart of a great company with a deep history in sports.”