Coco Gauff Is the First American Teen to Reach a US Open Semifinal Since Serena Williams


NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 05: Coco Gauff of the United States celebrates defeating Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia in the quarter-final on Day 9 of the US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 05, 2023 in New York City (Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images)

Tennis sensation Coco Gauff is on a roll, and her US Open run is the latest proof. The 19-year-old has officially reached the semifinals of the tournament, making her the first American teen to do so since the GOAT Serena Williams did it in 2001.

Gauff, who’s currently ranked sixth in women’s singles by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA), beat Latvian player Jelena Ostapenko 6-0 and 6-2 in the quarterfinals on Sept. 5 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York City. She’s now just one match win away from her first career singles final at the Open. She’ll play that semifinal match on Sept. 7 against Karolína Muchová, ranked 10th by the WTA, at a time TBD.

“I’m so happy,” Gauff said in an on-court interview after her win against Ostapenko. “Last year I, you know, lost in the quarterfinal stage, and I wanted to do better this year. I still have a long way to go, but I’m happy and I’m ready to get back to work for the next one.”

Gauff has been on the pro tennis scene since she was 15, when she shocked the world by beating her idol, Venus Williams, in her Wimbledon debut. Now, at 19, Gauff is showing the world that she’s just getting started. In early August, Gauff won the Mubadala Citi DC Open, grabbing her first big US singles title and becoming the youngest women’s champion in that tournament’s history. Shortly after, she went on to win the Western & Southern Open, becoming the first teenager to do so in more than 50 years. Her run at the 2023 US Open is only a continuation of this hot streak.

“The US swing is my favorite time of year. I love to build up to NY in Atlanta, DC, and Canada. These tournaments feel like home,” Gauff told POPSUGAR in an interview just ahead of the Open.

Only time will tell if Gauff is headed toward a US Open title or a career-long legacy like Serena, who’s currently retired from professional tennis with 23 Grand Slam titles. But if this moment in history is any indication, she’s on the right path.

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