By Sigurd Neubauer
The American wonderkid Coco Gauff, 19, is playing the tennis of her life. On Saturday, she won the US Open, her first Grand Slam title. The teenager arrived in New York armed with two major titles; in August she won the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati, Ohio, and in July, the Mubadala Citi DC Open in the nation’s capital.
At the US Open final, Gauff easily picked apart Aryna Sabalenka – 2-6, 6-3, 6-2 – when her game collapsed during the second set. The Belarussian is the No. 1 ranked WTA player in the world whereas Gauff is No. 3.
Gilbert has coached some of the very best players in the world, including Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, and Andy Murray, – and now Gauff – who have all won Grand Slams. Gilbert’s contribution to Gauff’s success is apparent.
But Gauff also represents everything that is beautiful about America. She’s not only an extraordinary athlete – who may very well dominate the wonderful world of women’s tennis for decades to come – but she’s also consistently displaying great values.
For instance, at the pinnacle of Gauff’s success in New York – immediately following her victory on Saturday – the youngster rushed off to hug her father, Corey Gauff, before returning to court where she kneeled in prayer.
During her victory speech in Cincinnati, Gauff credited her Christian faith in a heartfelt tribute while also thanking her father and family. To wild cheers, Gauff said: “This is unbelievable. I’d like to thank my lord & savior Jesus Christ. I spent a lot of nights alone crying trying to figure it out. I still have a lot to figure out, but I thank him for covering me.”
Gauff’s grace, humility and great values were once again on display at the US Open when she was asked about the increasing pressure she faces now that she’s at the very top of women’s tennis.
The Américaine extraordinaire said: “I realize in a way it’s pressure, but it’s not. There are people struggling to feed their families, people who don’t know where their next meal is going to come from, people who have to pay their bills. That’s real pressure, that’s real hardship, that’s real life. I’m in a very privileged position. I’m getting paid to do what I love and getting support to do what I love. That’s something that I don’t take for granted.”
The US Open’s unofficial mantra is: Pressure is Privilege.
Gauff is already a great American whose values and commitment to excellence may very well inspire others. We’re rooting for you!
Gauff represents everything that is beautiful about America. She’s not only an extraordinary athlete – who may very well dominate the wonderful world of women’s tennis for decades to come – but she’s also consistently displaying great values
Gauff won her first Grand Slam title at the 2023 US Open