Aryna Sabalenka warns Coco Gauff: "I want revenge"

The Belarusian hopes to be able to 'avenge' the defeat suffered in the US Open final, last season

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Aryna Sabalenka warns Coco Gauff: "I want revenge"
© Sarah Stier / Staff Getty Images Sport

Aryna Sabalenka will face Coco Gauff in the semifinal of the Australian Open 2024. A challenge that will be a sort of rematch of the final lost by the Belarusian against the American at the US Open 2023. A defeat that stung a lot for Aryna, who after the match let off steam in the tunnel towards the locker rooms, smashing a racket.

The current WTA No.2 didn't lose a single set in the five matches she won in Melbourne before reaching the semifinal, also changing her approach thanks to a new mentality.

Aryna Sabalenka
Aryna Sabalenka© Cameron Spencer / Staff Getty Images Sport

Answering journalists' questions about the match against Gauff, Aryna underlined how she hopes to be able to take revenge against the young American.

"I'm happy to face her, I really wanted to have the chance to get revenge. It was a fantastic match at the US Open. I'm excited to play this semi-final. I think I'm more mature now. I'm trying not to go crazy on the court, not to rush things. I want to play point after point, without thinking too much about my dreams. I was able to eliminate this type of mentality to focus more on myself and the things I can improve," explained the Belarusian player.

Sabalenka on taking responsibility

Regarding her new attitude, Sabalenka revealed that she had previously worked with a mental coach, but that now she has to take responsibility for what she does herself: "I have worked with a mental coach for years and he has helped me a lot, but I realized that I needed to control my emotions better on my own. I think that was the biggest decision I made: I have to take responsibility for the things I do."

The delay caused by long daytime matches prompted the tournament organizers to communicate with Sabalenka and Barbora Krejcikova to consider moving the match to another court.

"I am super happy to have overcome this match. Barbora is a tough opponent and we have always had great battles in the past. I am happy with the level expressed and the victory.

Possible change of court? There was the possibility that one of the matches scheduled in the session evening was moved, but we decided to see the progress of the match between Novak Djokovic and Taylor Fritz. We could have changed sides, but Novak won the third and fourth sets. I'm happy to have played on Rod Laver Arena in the end," she explained.

Aryna Sabalenka Coco Gauff Us Open