“I know one day I’ll hold the trophy there” – Coco Gauff believes in her US Open future
For Coco Gauff, evolution is part of the process. At just 18, she’s already gained perspective on what it is that can help her blossom as a professional.
The 12th-ranked American, and current doubles No 1, says that she has recently gone through a change in outlook that has helped her deal with the pressure and expectations that have been a part of her life ever since she burst onto the scene at Wimbledon in 2019, reaching the second week as a qualifier.
Paris was a difference maker
After her breakthrough run to the Roland-Garros final this spring, Gauff says she is looking at success a lot differently.
“I had a perspective shift in Paris,” she told ESPN. “I realized life is so much more than tennis and winning and losing. This life is enjoyable. I don’t want to regret not having as much fun as I could have because I was worried about results.
“I used to say I wanted to be the greatest because that’s what people wanted to hear. Now I say it because it’s what I want for myself.”— Coco Gauff
“My goals are the same,” she says. “But the mentality behind them is different. I want to enjoy the tough moments.”
Doing it for her own reasons
Gauff also spoke about the importance of playing for herself rather that simply attempting to live up to the expectations of the public.
“For a long time, I was stepping onto the court trying to be the next great American whatever, the next Serena,” she said. “But that’s not why I play tennis. I used to say I wanted to be the greatest because that’s what people wanted to hear. Now I say it because it’s what I want for myself.”
The ultimate confidence – “I know one day I’ll hold the trophy”
Most important for Gauff? The confidence reigns supreme. For her, the questions isn’t whether or not she can win a US Open title, but when she will do it.
“It’s my favorite Slam,” she says. “Playing in front of the home crowd. I hope I can win in front of them.” She pauses, takes a moment before continuing. “That’s the goal, but we’ll see. I know one day I’ll hold the trophy there.”