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19-Year-Old Coco Gauff Reacts After Inspiring Grandmother Steals the Show in Delray Beach Amid Billie Jean King Cup Qualifiers

Published Apr 15, 2023 | 4:15 PM EDT

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via Reuters

The tennis credentials of Coco Gauff cannot be undermined. The 19-year-old is well on her way to following in the footsteps of greats such as Venus and Serena Williams. This year, Gauff will aim to move to the next stage of her career: winning her first-ever Grand Slam title at the upcoming French Open, which gets going on May 28. Right now, Gauff is a part of Team USA’s efforts in the qualifying round of the Billie Jean King Cup against Austria. Delray Beach, Gauff’s home, is hosting the qualifier, which started on April 14. However, in the hours leading up to the qualifier, it was Gauff’s grandmother who stole the show. Gauff’s reaction through a tweet was a reflection of how much she loves and respects her grandmother.

Coco Gauff is following in her grandmother’s footsteps

Yvonne Lee Odom, Gauff’s grandmother, was among the panelists at Delray Beach’s Champions of Equity women’s luncheon. The achievements of every panelist were highlighted at the special event. Gauff took to Twitter and shared a tweet from @BlairHenley to let the world know what her grandmother means to her.

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Back in 1961, Lee Odom was Seacrest High School’s sole black student. At the time, Gauff’s grandmother ensured that the school’s students maintained their discipline. Lee Odom’s management skills resulted in success. In the long run, this allowed both black and white students to pursue their education in harmony. Gauff herself is doing her bit to make sure to motivate youngsters, particularly across black communities, to pursue careers in tennis.

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Eventually, Lee Odom became a teacher, and she served the education sector of Palm Beach County for a whopping 45 years. Apart from making a significant impact in the field of education, Odom also cemented her place as a religious figure. She continues to actively participate in the activities of Boynton Beach’s St. John Missionary Baptist Church.

Read More: ‘Remember Being That Kid’ – After Making Waves in Tennis, 19-Year-Old Coco Gauff Envisions Impossible Venus and Serena Williams Goal

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What’s next for Gauff?

There are no two ways about it; Gauff’s grandmother is an inspirational figure. Gauff would do well to make the most of such an inspirational person in the family. It should help her achieve more on the tennis court. For now, Gauff’s sights are firmly set on helping Team USA in the Billie Jean King Cup qualifier.

USA Today via Reuters

However, come May, Gauff will look to do well at Roland Garros inspired by players like Naomi Osaka and Nick Kyrgios. She’s still 19, so there’s a lot of time on her hands to improve her game and become one of the greats in women’s professional tennis. However, Gauff looks like she has the desire and hunger to be an early achiever.

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Watch This Story: How a Two-Word Message Was Enough to Rekindle the Romance Between Serena Williams and Husband Alexis Ohanian

Written by:

Sudipto Pati

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One take at a time

Sudipto is a Tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication in 2012. His passion for writing became a full-time profession in 2019 after working as a musician and travelling educator.
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Edited by:

Tony Thomas