World No. 4 Paula Badosa dropped words of praise on Cori Gauff following their San Jose match, saying the 18-year-old American has what it takes to become a great champion. Badosa, the second-seeded player in the San Jose main draw, ousted sixth-seeded home favorite Gauff 7-6 (4) 6-2 in the quarterfinal.
Badosa now leads the head-to-head versus Gauff 2-1. “I had to be quite consistent in at the baseline,” Badosa said after beating Gauff, per The San Francisco Chronicle. “She’s a great runner, she’s aggressive, she has everything to to be a great champion.
But in the moment, I had to be more consistent. I’m happy about this win because it was an important one for me”.
Badosa on beating Gauff
“The beginning was tough was she was she started serving well,” Badosa said.
“For me, trying to find rhythm is to play a lot of long, long points. So I was trying to find that and to return her serve a little bit more because she has a big, big serve”. Gauff earned the first break of the match in the third game, but Badosa broke back in the fourth game.
After blowing her first break, Gauff broke Badosa again in the fifth game. Gauff had a 5-3 lead through the first eight games, but Badosa refused to quit as she broke back the American in the 10th game and saved two break points in the 11th game to force a tie-break.
In the tie-break, the two players were tied at 4-4, before Badosa won the next three points to win a tight opener. After winning the first set, Badosa broke Gauff twice in the second set to complete a straight-set win. “After (the first set) I think she got upset and she had some doubts with my serve,” Badosa added. “I took that opportunity and I played pretty smart”.