“I Wasn’t Expecting a Yes”: Coco Gauff Reveals How Teaming Up With Venus Williams Happened at French Open 2021

Published 06/02/2021, 8:44 AM EDT
LONDON, ENGLAND – JULY 01: Cori Gauff of the United States shakes hands at the net with Venus Williams of The United States after her Ladies’ Singles first round match against Venus Williams of The United States during Day one of The Championships – Wimbledon 2019 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 01, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)


Teenage prodigy, Coco Gauff, is set to partner with tennis legend Venus Williams for women’s doubles at French Open 2021. Both of them have said a lot about each other in the press conferences and like themselves, even fans can’t wait to see them together on the court.

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Coco Gauff of the U.S. celebrates winning her third-round match against Belarus’ Aryna Sabalenka REUTERS/Guglielmo Mangiapane

Gauff had a trusted and long-time doubles partner in fellow American Caty McNally. However, she got injured during the qualifying stages of Roland Garros and hence dropped out. But then, that opened a door for Venus to become Coco’s partner. And Venus‘ yes came as a surprise to Gauff, who didn’t expect it to happen.

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“I enjoy playing doubles. I’m actually super happy, because I reached out to — well, my dad reached out to Venus’ team last minute, because unfortunately my partner, I was playing with Caty, she got hurt in quallies, and we thought it was best if she rest and get ready for the grass.

“So I reached out last minute and I wasn’t expecting a yes, to be honest. It was worth the ask.”

Watch this story: Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Maria Sharapova, Naomi Osaka, Ashleigh Barty, Victoria Azarenka, Coco Gauff, and Other WTA Players Maiden Tour Title

Venus Williams of the United States celebrates after winning match point. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Coco Gauff wants to learn from Venus Williams

It will be amazing to see a veteran of the sport in Venus play alongside one of the emerging talents in Coco. Venus is 40 whereas Coco is 17 and that age difference is massive in numbers as well as experience. Coco has a lot to grasp from Venus, who is a former singles finalist and a two-time doubles champion at Roland Garros.

“I’m happy that she said yes, and it’s going to be super exciting and for me, I love playing doubles and, you know like, hopefully, I can pick up some things from her she obviously has so many grand slams and doubles, and, you know, I want to win grand slams and singles and doubles so maybe this week we can have a good run these two weeks.”

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Gauff and Venus are going to start their doubles match against 13th seed Zheng Saisai and Ellen Perez. Let’s see how youth and experience can combine and probably do well at Roland Garros.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1071 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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