Coco Gauff, a rising star in the world of tennis, has expressed her desire to develop great rivalries with some of the similar-aged players on tour over the next 10-15 years.
The 18-year-old American reached the third round of the 2023 Australian Open on the back of wins against the Czech Republic’s Katerina Siniakova and Great Britain’s Emma Raducanu. She will lock horns with compatriot Bernarda Pera on Friday in a bid to reach the fourth round of the Melbourne Major for the second time in her career.
Captivated by the rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, the World No. 7 recently stated that she hoped to follow in the footsteps of the two legends and build something similar with her contemporaries. Opponents that came to mind included Raducanu, World No. 1 Iga Swiatek, and Leylah Fernandez.
“Emma is definitely one. I think we showed that in our match, which I think was a decent quality for the most part,” Gauff said. “Playing against her was a match-up which I know a lot of people were looking forward to and I hope we delivered the entertainment which everyone wanted. While there is also Iga Swiatek and Leylah Fernandez, who are a similar age.”
Coco Gauff also acknowledged newcomers like 18-year-old Diana Shnaider of Russia and sisters Linda Fruhvirtova, 17, and Brenda Fruhvirtova, 15.
“The Fruhvirtova sisters – Linda, who is 17, and Brenda, who is 15 – are just starting their careers and seem to have opportunities to do something great in the game, too. Another young player who has impressed me here in Melbourne is Diana Shnaider. She almost caused a shock against Maria Sakkari on Wednesday,” Gauff added.