Coco Gauff, 19, called Serena Williams “the GOAT” and admitted never getting a chance to play against her idol is “the only regret” she is going to have for the rest of her life. On Thursday, Gauff defeated Karolina Muchova to become the first American since Serena Williams in 2019 to reach the US Open final. “I don’t think I’m carrying American tennis.
I don’t think I will. We have so many compatriots who are doing well. Serena is Serena. She’s the GOAT. I’d hope to do half of what she did. But I’m not gonna compare myself to her. She’s someone I look up to.
Being in the same stat line as her means a lot to me. She’s my idol. The only regret I’ll have for the rest of my life is not being able to play her. There were so many tournaments where if we won an extra round and didn’t lose, I would’ve played her.
I’m still happy to just be a product of her legacy,” Gauff told ESPN.
Gauff on achieving Williams’ feats at the US Open
By beating Caroline Wozniacki in the US Open round-of-16, Gauff became the first American female player since Williams to reach back-to-back US Open quarterfinals.
After Gauff defeated Jelena Ostapenko in the quarterfinal, she became the first American teenager since Williams in 2001 to reach the US Open semifinal. “It means a lot to me. I mean, being in any sentence with her is great.
I mean, she’s the greatest player of all time. You know, I’m nothing close to that yet. I’m just really honored to be in the same sentence as her. It’s something that I’m used to a lot. So, you know, I’m not gonna sit here and be like, ‘Oh, I’m shocked’, but I feel like a lot of the stats have aligned with her, and people find new things to think about,” Gauff said. Gauff plays Aryna Sabalenka in the US Open final.