In a history-making feat, Cori “Coco” Gauff secured a win in the first round at Wimbledon Monday and beat Venus Williams in the process. The 15-year-old clasped her hands on top of her head and dropped her racket in apparent disbelief once she beat the seven-time Grand Slam winner.
“Honestly, I don’t really know how to feel. This is the first time I ever cried after a match. Or winning, obviously. I’ve cried after a loss before,” Gauff told reporters afterward. “I don’t even know how to explain how I feel.”
Below are 6 facts you need to know about the rising tennis phenom.
She’s Already Making History
At 15, when Gauff upset Williams, 39, she became the youngest tennis player to win a match at Wimbledon since 1991. Plus, Gauff is the youngest finalist in history to compete in the girls’ singles event at the US Open.
It was the teen’s first time in the competition when she won against her icon, Venus, in a 6-4, 6-4 victory during the first round. Venus, meanwhile, has won five titles during the more than 100 times she’s played at Wimbledon, the Associated Press reported.
Her Father Is Taking Tips Out of Richard Williams’ Playbook
Similar to her famed tennis pro idols, Gauff is primarily coached by her dad, Corey Gauff. A profile on the teen in The New York Times reveals her parents even followed the outline of the Williams sisters’ dad, Richard, by training at Pompey Park in Delray Beach, Florida.
Her Endorsements Are Racing Toward the $1M Mark
Gauff has three endorsements that have her on the fast track, piling up to around $1 million at her tender age. At the end of 2018, Forbes reported Gauff scored deals with racket maker Head, as well as show maker New Balance, which came after a bidding war with Nike. The newest endorsement came from pasta giant Barilla Group.
She Looks Up to Venus and Serena Williams
“Serena Williams has always been my idol … and Venus. They’re the reason why I wanted to pick up a tennis racket,” Gauff said of the tennis icons in an interview uploaded to Wimbledon’s Twitter account. “And I met them both, and they’re both super-kind people, and I’m just super happy and thankful that they chose to play tennis.”
She’s Been Training for This Before She Entered Second Grade
When the family moved to Delray Beach, Florida, Gauff started playing tennis at 7, according to Yahoo UK. The youngster picked up a tennis racket getting inspiration from the Williams sisters on TV. By the time she was 10, Gauff started training at Paris’ Mouratoglou Academy.
She’s Got Ties to the A
Gauff was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on March 13, 2004 to a mom, Candi, who was an elite 110-meter hurdler, an award-winning dancer, and a skilled gymnast, Yahoo UK reported. Her dad, Corey, played basketball at Georgia State University. However, the teen grew up in Delray Beach, Florida.