Coco Gauff at the 2023 US Open. (Photo by Derrel Jazz Johnson for rolling out.)
For the second time in three matches at the 2023 US Open, teenaged tennis superstar Coco Gauff lost the first set of the 2023 U.S. Open. And for the second time, Gauff, who wore a bright neon green outfit that matched her New Balance sneakers, came back to win the final two sets to advance, this time over Belgian Elise Mertens 3-6, 6-3, 6-0 in front of stars like Jimmy Butler, Justin Bieber, and his wife Hailey Bieber.
Coco Gauff discussed playing well after losing the first set. “I was playing well in the second set,” she said. “I think I established my game plan. In the third, I was playing great tennis. I think the match was really physical the first two sets even though the scoreline doesn’t show that.”
She also discussed the stars at the match.“I was definitely starstruck with Justin Bieber,” she admitted. ”’Never Say Never’ was like the first, I think one of my favorite songs when I was a kid. Then ‘Baby’. I could go through all his songs. Then Hailey, too, coming. I guess it was a little date night for them, which was really cool. Obviously, Jimmy Butler, he’s came to a couple of my matches. I wasn’t as surprised he was there. I still am like, Man, this guy is busy, why is he coming to watch me play?”
Finally, Gauff talked about her next matchup against Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark. Who she will face on Sunday.
“I don’t think she’s going to give me anything,” she predicted. “She’s obviously one of those players that was a great mover when she played. She got a lot of balls back, so I’m expecting long rallies. Also, I’ve watched her last couple matches this week. I think she’s playing a little bit more aggressive I guess compared to when she was starting, before she won Australia.”
Francis Tiafoe lost his first set of the tournament but stormed back to win the next three sets to defeat Adrian Mannarino 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (6) to advance.
Tiafoe discussed the win.
“I thought it was a good match,” he said. “Honestly even though I lost the first, I thought I was the better player. I played one loose game there, kind of broke myself there.”
Tiafoe also discussed his next match against his tennis IQ.
:I think I’m super underrated when it comes to tennis IQ,” he asserted. “People used to talk about me as an energetic player, using the crowd. I think a lot of people don’t talk about how I got a lot of tools in the tool bag. I’m not afraid to go in there and pull out whatever to try to win a tennis match. A lot of people don’t talk about that at all. Hey, man, it is what it is.”
Source: Rolling Out