Rising American star Cori Gauff came out on the court determined to put up a strong performance and that's exactly what she did on Friday in Miami. Gauff, seeded at No. 14, handled the business against Wang Qiang as she handed the Chinese a 7-5 6-4 in the Miami second round.
Gauff was hoping to make a strong result at the Australian Open but then she suffered a disappointing first round loss to Wang at Melbourne Park. Two months later, Gauff and Wang met again and this time the American didn't let the Chinese claim a surprise win.
It was the fourth meeting between the two and Gauff's third win over Wang. "I was just super-motivated today," Gauff said after the match, per the WTA Tour website. "Extra motivation because I'm playing at home, and also because I lost before.
I feel like everything was working for me today, but especially my mindset - I had an opportunity to serve out the first set and also the last one, but I got broken. But I'm happy that I was able to break back."
Gauff got the job done in straight sets
Gauff saved a break point in the opening game of the match, before earning the first break in the second game to open an early 2-0 lead.
Gauff led 5-2 through the opening seven games but then failed to serve out for the first set in the ninth game. However, Gauff kept her focus as she earned her second break in the 12th game to win the first set. Wang had a chance to claim an early break in the second set but Gauff saved two break points in the first game and two more break points in the third game.
No breaks were seen in the first five games of the second set as Gauff led 3-2. Then, breaks of serve were seen in five consecutive games as Gauff booked a 7-5 6-4 win. With her victory, Gauff made it past the Miami second round for the first time in her career.