Serena Williams' ex-coach Rick Macci identifies what changed in Cori Gauff's game

Coach Macci reflects on Gauff's impressive summer.

by Dzevad Mesic
Serena Williams' ex-coach Rick Macci identifies what changed in Cori Gauff's game
© Getty Images Sport - Sarah Stier

Serena Williams' childhood coach Rick Macci thinks Cori Gauff is now "more relaxed and calm inside" but the fire and desire to reach greater heights stayed untouched. On Wednesday, Gauff saw off Mirra Andreeva 6-3 6-2 to reach the US Open third round.

With that win, Gauff improved to 13-1 this summer on hard courts. After winning Washington and her first WTA 1000 title in Cincinnati, Gauff is looking to become a Grand Slam champion at the US Open. "The wildcard for @CocoGauff is I see a more Relaxed Chilled Inner Calmness but the exact same Fire and Desire to soar Higher.

She found the IDEAL PERFORMANCE STATE where the Mind and Body are best friends and SHE IS NOT COMPETING AGAINST HERSELF. NUMBER ONE ON THE HORIZON!" Macci wrote on X.

Macci praises Gauff's improvement

After suffering a first-round loss at Wimbledon, Gauff took some time to analyze what happened and she also hired Andre Agassi's ex-coach Brad Gilbert.

In the first part of the season, Gauff's forehand was openly targeted by rivals and some players were openly saying that they were going against that particular shot in the American's game. But in recent weeks, rivals haven't had much success targeting Gauff's forehand.

Cori Gauff© Getty Images Sport - Clive Brunskill

After her win over Andreeva, Gauff explained how she sees rivals getting frustrated because their game plan doesn't work. "Yeah, I mean, things have improved. That's for sure.

I think that the way opponents are playing me, some play me different, some don't. And so honestly it just depends on the day. I still have to improve a lot on both wings, to be honest. Yeah, but I definitely think that, you know, I've noticed that sometimes people do get frustrated with their team when, like, that happens.

You'll see sometimes back and forth, I don't know if they pick it up on camera. Yeah, it's definitely something I've improved on. I think that's just part of learning. I recognize it was a weakness and I try my best to improve it, and I still need to improve it. Yeah," Gauff said.

Serena Williams Rick Macci Cori Gauff