Coco Gauff, 15, Tears Up After Getting Knocked Out of Australian Open: 'I Was Disappointed'

Just days after besting reigning Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka, Coco Gauff was defeated by fellow American Sofia Kenin

Australian Open 2020
Photo: Recep Sakar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Coco Gauff’s Australian Open journey has come to an end.

Just days after defeating reigning Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka — and becoming the youngest player to eliminate a reigning champ in the professional era — the 15-year-old newcomer was knocked out of the fourth round by fellow American Sofia Kenin.

After losing 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-0, Gauff gave Kenin, 21, a hug before walking off the court in tears.

I was disappointed that I lost obviously,” the teenage athlete told reporters after the match on Sunday. “I think naturally when I lose, I’m just a bit emotional.

While the match ultimately didn’t go her way, Gauff still feels like she can be proud of herself.

“The thing I’m most proud of myself is how I handled it on the court,” the rising tennis star added. “Even though today I lost a set 6-0, I was still believing I could win it. I don’t think I showed any negative emotion too much in the match. I just tried my best.”

Australian Open Tennis, Day Seven, Melbourne Park, Australia - 26 Jan 2020
Coco Gauff. James Gourley/BPI/Shutterstock

As she continues to move forward in the sport, Gauff says her “short-term goal is to improve.”

“I don’t even think this is close to a peak for me, even though I’m doing well right now. The goal is just really to get better, you know, have these good runs at tournaments, building up my experience and playing more tournaments just so I can be ready for matches like this today,” she said.

“I’m definitely going to savor this and continue to kind of build and get better to work for moments like this, moments like that last match. Even today, even though I lost, I still had a lot of fun. I mean, now looking back, I’m not as disappointed anymore,” she added.

2020 Australian Open - Day 7
Coco Gauff and Sofia Kenin. TPN/Getty Images

Although she’s been knocked out of the singles tournament, Gauff and doubles partner Caty McNally will face off against Japan’s Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara on Monday.

Kenin, 21, who will be advancing to her first-ever Grand Slam quarterfinal, will also be taking the court on Monday with doubles partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands.

Last summer, during her debut appearance at Wimbledon, Gauff made a splash by defeating her idol Venus Williams and making history in the process, by becoming the youngest player since 1991 to win in the first round of the ladies’ singles tournament.

Gauff was eventually knocked out in the fourth round by Simona Halep, who went on to defeat Serena Williams in the final.

Speaking to PEOPLE in August, Gauff said that the transition to overnight sensation has come with some challenges.

“When I was younger, I was just dreaming about winning tournaments and winning slams I guess, and I didn’t think about all that would come with it,” she said. “But honestly, I’m just grateful that I’ve been given the platform and I hope that I’m able to use this platform in the right way.”

Related Articles