Coco Gauff Reaches Citi Open Main Draw
(July 28, 2019) WASHINGTON, DC – Cori “Coco” Gauff has reached the main draw of the Citi Open. She defeated 265th ranked Hiroko Kuwata of Japan 6-1, 6-2 in the final round of the qualifying tournament in 64 minutes on Sunday in front of an almost sell-out crowd at the Rock Creek Tennis Center. It’s a rarity that a qualifying weekend of a tournament garners so much attention, but thanks to Gauff, the people came, despite the 90 degree heat and high humidity. The heat doesn’t bother Gauff, a Delray Beach, Florida resident.
“The weather is similar to home, so I felt like I’ve been practicing at home,” Gauff said to media. “I’ll be happy playing on any court.”
From 1-1 in the first set, the 15-year-old Floridian Gauff won seven straight games to take a 6-1, 2-0 lead and never looked back.
Gauff has now qualified for her third main draw tournament, coming through the qualies at the Miami Open and Wimbledon previously. She reached the second round of Miami back in March and famously made the round of 16 at Wimbledon earlier this month, where she lost to the eventual champion Simona Halep. Her run at Wimbledon began with a first-round victory over her idol Venus Williams.
“I’m happy that I was able to get into the main draw,” Gauff said to Tennis Panorama. “These two matches, I feel like, will prep me for my first round, especially because I’ve never been to this tournament before”.
“I was glad that I was able to get a feel of how it is, the site, playing those two qualifying matches.
She’ll play Zarina Diyas, ranked No. 84 in the world in the first round. She has never before faced the Kazakh.
Listen to Coco Gauff’s news conference: