Coco Gauff has one wish this summer after brutal fate at Tokyo Olympics

Gauff didn't make her Olympic debut in Tokyo due to a brutal circumstance but hopes the same won't happen this summer.

by Dzevad Mesic
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Coco Gauff has one wish this summer after brutal fate at Tokyo Olympics
© Getty Images Sport - Clive Mason

Coco Gauff is just hoping to avoid a brutal fate from the Tokyo Olympics as the top-ranked American female tennis player is determined to make it a memorable Olympic debut in Paris and bring a medal to her country. 

Gauff, who turned 20 in March, earned an Olympic spot in Tokyo and she was supposed to make her Olympic debut three years ago. But then, Gauff's Olympic debut was halted in one of the most unfortunate ways possible as she tested positive for COVID just before the event started and was forced to pull out. 

Now less than a month before the start of the Paris Olympics, Gauff is fully healthy and preparing to play at Wimbledon first. Heading into Wimbledon, the 20-year-old wants to be a contender for her second Grand Slam title but also to avoid any injuries or physical setbacks that could possibly stop her from competing in Paris in late July. 

"Fingers crossed nothing happens to me at the last minute again! But I'm really happy to have my shot at a medal... every time I see somebody else with a gold medal, I want one so bad," Gauff told People

Coco Gauff
Coco Gauff © Getty Images Sport - Graham Denholm
 

What Gauff said about the Tokyo withdrawal and her Olympic goals earlier this year?

Before the start of this year's Miami Open, American tennis star Gauff confirmed that she was absolutely planning to play at the Olympics. 

And when asked to reveal how she honestly felt after the Tokyo Olympics withdrawal, Gauff admitted that she was initially "crushed" before simply accepting that it was not something she could have controlled. 

“I was (crushed) for a day, and then I was like, well, there’s nothing I can do about it. You know, people have lost family members. And I realized that life isn’t about playing tennis – so I was OK with it after a day," Gauff said in Miami.

Over the last year, Gauff has brought a lot of success to American tennis - she won the 2023 US Open, made back-to-back semifinals in the last two Grand Slams, and she is also currently enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 2 in the world. And during that Miami presser, the American issued a very clear answer on how badly she wanted to get a gold medal for herself and her country. 

“One of my biggest dreams is to win a gold medal, and frankly, I think it’s one of the things that it doesn’t matter what event it’s in. A gold medal is a gold medal, where I feel like the Grand Slams is definitely way cooler to win a singles one than a doubles one,” Gauff said at the time. 

Coco Gauff
Coco Gauff © Getty Images Sport - Inaki Esnaola
 

Gauff also has big Olympic goals with Jessica Pegula in doubles

Although Gauff and Pegula are not regular doubles players, they have been one of the most successful teams over the last two years as they have won five titles. And while they don't have a Grand Slam title as a duo, they were the runners-up at the 2022 French Open - the same venue where the Paris Olympics will take place. Also, they were semifinalists at last year's Australian Open and French Open.

When addressing her Olympic goals earlier this year, Gauff noted it was important for her to play some doubles events and keep her form there but also hinted she would cut on doubles after the Olympics. 

“I will say next year I do want to play a little bit less doubles maybe after the Olympics, but it’s tough right now I feel like to just stop playing completely when you are doing well with someone who is from your same country, which you don’t see that in a lot of teams. That’s probably my thinking, that at least through the Olympics I want to try my best to stay ranked high enough so we can qualify," Gauff explained earlier this year.

Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula
Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula © Getty Images Sport - Mike Hewitt
 

Since Pegula was injured and unable to play at the French Open, Gauff found another partner as she and Katerina Siniakova ended up winning it all in their team debut. 

After the French Open, Gauff returned to playing doubles with Pegula. However, their return didn't go really well since they lost to Linda Noskova and Katerina Siniakova in their Berlin opener. 

But the goal for the Paris Olympics stays the same. 

“I know she's [Gauff] told me she really wants to win a medal next year, and she really wants a Slam, so that's kind of what we're working towards. I think you have to play other events if those are your goals," Pegula said earlier this year. 

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