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02.07.2019 Tennis

15-year old Gauff Crash Venus Williams Out Of Wimbledon

By Samuel Ekow Amoasi Appiah
15-year old Gauff Crash Venus Williams Out Of Wimbledon
JUL 2, 2019 TENNIS

Five-time Wimbledon champion, Venus Williams has been shockingly eliminated from this year's Wimbledon by a 15-year-old qualifier, Cori Gauff, in their opening game on Court 10 on Monday.

The young American, Gauff, ranked 313 in the world, beat 39-year-old Williams who is 24 years her senior, 6-4, 6-4.

Fellow American Williams had won four Grand Slam titles - including two at Wimbledon - before Gauff was born.

Gauff, who won the French Open junior title last year, took a 3-2 lead against Williams in the first set, surprising her older opponent with some attacking game and hitting only two unforced errors throughout the set.

Within 35 minutes, the youngster had sealed a first set victory and again went a break up in the second on a Williams' double-fault.

The five-time champion got back into the game, also taking advantage of Gauff's double fault, but the young American recovered and eventually clinched a memorable win on a fourth break point.

It marks only the second time Williams has been beaten in the first round at Wimbledon since her 1997 debut.

"It's the first time I have ever cried after winning a match," said Gauff, who previously said Venus and sister Serena were her "idols".

"I don't know how to explain how I feel.
"I definitely had to tell myself to stay calm, I had to remind myself that the lines are the same lines, the courts are the same size and after every point I told myself 'stay calm'."

Gauff will play Slovakia's Magdalena Rybarikova - 15 years her senior - in the second round.

Williams turned professional 10 years before her opponent was born, with Gauff being the youngest player to qualify for the main Wimbledon draw since the Open era began in 1968.

According to the BBC, Gauff in previous interviews had said the Williams sisters inspired her to first pick up a tennis racquet.

"Venus told me congratulations and keep going, she said good luck and I told her thanks for everything she did," Gauff added.

"I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for her - I told her she was so inspiring and I've always wanted to tell her that but I've never had the guts to before.

"My parents will be super happy, my dad was jumping up every time I won a point. I'm so happy they spent all their time on me and my brothers and making sure we're successful.

"I never thought this would happen. I'm literally living my dream right now.

"I'm really happy Wimbledon gave me the chance to play, I never thought I would get this far."

In a sharp introduction to the Wimbledon stage, Gauff initially struggled to return Williams' serve but she soon impressed with big serves of her own.

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