A year ago, the 14-year-old Cori Gauff cracked the top-500 for the first time after reaching the first pro final two weeks earlier. Twelve months later, the super talented American has become the youngest player in the top-50 since 2005, embracing an incredible run during this period and entering the record books once again.
Cori will turn 16 on March 13, showing her potential on the most significant tennis scene years before her coevals and taking big steps towards her quest to become the greatest player in history! Despite a reduced schedule, this incredible youngster who works in Florida has already won her first WTA title and reached the second week at Majors twice, delivering some notable victories and battling against more experienced and better-ranked rivals with no sign of fear.
Cori had to pick three WTA events at the beginning of the new season before her birthday, choosing to play at the ASB Classis, the Australian Open and Indian Wells as her first stops before getting a chance to enter more tournaments in the following months after the 16th birthday.
Making a debut in Melbourne at the age when her coevals only dream about playing the junior event, Cori toppled Venus Williams and the defending champion Naomi Osaka to reach the last 16, taking the opening set before losing to an eventual champion Sofia Kenin.
Cori has been one of the young guns to watch ever since the US Open 2017 when she reached the junior final at the age of 13, becoming junior no. 1 and Roland Garros champion at the age of 14 next year when she also grabbed her first professional wins.
Targeting the place in the top-100 at the end of 2019, Cori left junior tennis behind after conquering the Orange Bowl in December 2018, focusing on the professional tournaments and making remarkable progress in moving ahead of some 600 rivals on the WTA list!
Gauff advanced into the first professional final last February, still before turning 15, scoring the first WTA win on the big scene in Miami and receiving a wild card for the qualifying draw at Wimbledon. Taking the opportunity with both hands, Cori passed three obstacles to find herself in the main draw as the youngest qualifier ever at the All England Club, stunning the multiple champion Venus Williams in the first round and adding two more triumphs to her tally to become the youngest player in the fourth round at Wimbledon since Jennifer Capriati almost 30 years ago!
Moving closer to her goal, Gauff won two encounters at the US Open and claimed the first WTA title in Luxembourg as the last-minute lucky loser, becoming the youngest WTA champion since 2004 and cracking the top-70 ahead of 2020 when she can play more tournaments than in the previous year, at least after turning 16 in a couple of weeks.