“Don’t Focus on the Name”: Coco Gauff Opens Up on Relationship With Sloane Stephens After US Open 2021 Defeat

Published 09/02/2021, 6:03 AM EDT
Aug 30, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Coco Gauff of the United States waves to the crowd after winning a first round match against Magda Linette of Poland on day one of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports


World No.23 Coco Gauff recently suffered a defeat at the hands of Sloane Stephens in the second round of the US Open 2021. The 17-year-old looked really uncomfortable and failed to convert her chances during the match. The final scoreline of the match was 4-6, 2-6.

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In an exclusive interview to TennisMajors.com after the match, Coco Gauff mentioned that her defeat against Sloane Stephens would not affect her relationships with her in any way. She has a lot of respect for the former US Open champion and believes that she will continue to have cordial relations with her.

Coco Gauff of the United States reacts after winning a first round match against Magda Linette of Poland. Day one of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

“Anybody I play, I don’t really focus on the name or on the person. It’s just so much the ball. Obviously, I have a lot of respect for Sloane, looked up to her for a while, known her since I was little but I don’t think our relationship affected the match,” said Gauff in the interview.

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Gauff has known Stephens from a very young age. Interestingly, she even invited the American tennis star on her 10th birthday bash as a guest.

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“Played really well”- Coco Gauff on Sloane Stephens

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In the same interview, Gauff praised Stephens for exhibiting some great skills against her during the match. She also highlighted that she didn’t play her best tennis and could have done a lot better on the court.

Sep 1, 2021; Flushing, NY, USA; Sloane Stephens of the USA after winning the first set against Cori Gauff of the USA on day three of the 2021 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

“Sloane played really well. I think tonight I just didn’t play the best tennis that I could have. All the games were close. I just feel like I could have done a lot better returning and also on, like, pressure points, putting the ball in the court,” added the 17-year-old prodigy.

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After beating Gauff, Sloane Stephens has now advanced to the third round of the US Open 2021. Fans have huge expectations from her and want her to keep playing with the same momentum. Will she be able to conquer New York once again this year?

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Anshul Singh

1297 articles

Anshul Singh is a tennis author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing Journalism Honors from Delhi University. Having significant experience with content, Anshul has authored over 500 tennis articles. He has previously worked as a writer and an editor for DU Express, penning riveting articles on sports, politics, and culture.

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