Coco Gauff through to the last 16 of the Australian Open on her debut at the tournament
Last Updated: 24/01/20 9:47am
American teenager Coco Gauff produced a performance for the ages to knock out defending Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka on Friday.
The 15-year-old has already made headlines around the world but none of her achievements so far could compare to this as she took apart one of the best players in the world on Rod Laver Arena.
Gauff showed just how far she has come since Osaka produced a complete performance to beat her for the loss of three games at the US Open as she completed a stunning 6-3 6-4 success in 67 minutes.
Gauff was stunned by her achievement, saying: “Two years ago I lost first round in juniors, and now I’m here. This is crazy.
“I was just telling myself one point at a time and keep fighting because you never know what happens on this court.
“I’m on Rod Laver Arena, I can’t believe this.”
She was rock solid and took advantage of a error-strewn display from Osaka who became the third former Australian Open winner to bow out after Serena Williams and Caroline Wozniacki, who won the title in 2017 and 2018, lost their respective matches at Melbourne Park earlier in the day.
The teenager was trading well with Osaka from the back of the court and, as the first set progressed, it was the defending champion who started to snatch at her shots, missing a succession of backhands.
From 3-3, Gauff won three straight games to move a set in front and then broke the Osaka serve again at the start of the second set.
She had two chances to hold for 2-0 but could not take either and it seemed the chink of light that Osaka needed to get a foothold in the match again.
But the Japanese player simply was not playing well, and the unforced errors continued to flow.
Gauff broke again to lead 4-3 and, although Osaka forced her young opponent to serve it out, a comeback never looked on the cards.
Gauff said she had been too shy to speak to Rod Laver when she had passed him in he corridor but hoped to set up a meeting.
Laver was quick to respond on Twitter, saying: “Hello CocoGauff – congratulations on your incredible victory tonight. I would love to meet you too.”
Hello @CocoGauff – congratulations on your incredible victory tonight. I would love to meet you too. ?
— Rod Laver (@rodlaver) January 24, 2020
While this was a spectacular day for Gauff, it was a desperately disappointing one for Osaka, who had battled so brilliantly to win her second grand slam title here 12 months ago but succumbed meekly and could now drop out of the top 10.
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Source : Sky Sports