Coco Gauff rethinks WTA Finals, openly talks Grand Slam goals

Photo of Coco Gauff

After her debut in the WTA Finals semi-finals, Coco Gauff provided an honest assessment of the event, highlighting a shift in her perspective. This marked her second consecutive appearance in the season-ending tournament, culminating in her best performance by reaching the semi-finals. Regarded as a pinnacle in tennis, the end-of-year championships carry substantial significance, ranking just below the four Grand Slams.

In Cancun for the 2023 WTA Finals, Gauff expressed a heightened appreciation for the tournament while reiterating her primary aspiration to secure major titles. She shared, “It would be cool to win it. To be honest, as a kid, I always dreamt of winning Grand Slams.” Gauff, recognizing the WTA Finals as the epitome of excellence, revealed it as a newfound goal after two years of competition.

“I believe there’s room for improvement, and it would truly be a dream. If given the choice, winning another Grand Slam would be my preference. However, it remains a distant aspiration. I consider this tournament exceptionally challenging, not only because it features the Top 8 players but also due to its timing at the conclusion of the season.”

Gauff kicked off this year’s WTA Finals with a convincing victory over Ons Jabeur. Nevertheless, she experienced her ninth defeat against Iga Swiatek in the second group game. In order to secure a spot in the last four against Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrosova, Gauff staged a comeback from a set down, overcoming the Czech star 5-7, 7-6(4), 6-3, despite serving 17 double faults.

Similar to her peers, Gauff’s tournament was disrupted by persistent rain, and the strong winds notably impacted her serve. In the semi-finals against doubles partner and compatriot Jessica Pegula, Gauff only managed to secure victory in three games, marking the end of her WTA Finals journey.

The conclusion of Gauff’s extraordinary season was marked by her triumphant victory at the US Open, securing her first major title. Concluding the year with her career-best ranking at number three, she also secured titles in Cincinnati, Washington, and Auckland.

Ending the season with an impressive record of 24 victories in her last 28 matches, Gauff turned to Instagram to contemplate her journey and extend gratitude to her supporters. In a post, she announced, “The 2023 season has officially come to an end. Summing up this season in a few words is a challenge.” Gauff acknowledged navigating both the darkest and brightest days of the year, acknowledging substantial personal development.

Despite her usual hesitance to praise herself, she confessed to cultivating self-kindness and expressed pride in her resilience. In the face of skeptics, she underscored the belief that her path is guided by a greater plan and divine timing.


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