Cori Gauff’s first-round match at the San Diego Open was more than just a regular match for the American tennis star, as she hopes she and Robin Montgomery made Serena and Venus Williams proud. At the WTA 500 event in San Diego, the 18-year-old Gauff faced fellow African-American 18-year-old Robin Montgomery.
Gauff and Montgomery were playing against each other for the first time on a professional level, but have known each other for a decade. After Gauff earned a 6-3, 6-3 win over Montgomery, she praised the 18-year-old’s performance and level.
“I know Robin very well, we did a couple of USTA trips when we were like eight years old. Practically friends ever since. She played very well. I expected a good level from her. (I) was quite impressed with how well he hit the ball, it was tough for me.
I told him at the end of the match, maybe the next time we play, it’s not in a first-round match, maybe we’ll play in a final,» Gauff said, according to the WTA website.
Gauff hopes she and Montgomery have made the Williams sisters proud
Girls like Gauff and Montgomery grew up watching Serena and Venus, as the Williams sisters were the ones who inspired them to believe that their tennis dreams could one day come true.
The Williams sisters transcended the game and made a huge mark on tennis history by paving the way for girls like Gauff and Montgomery to succeed in the game. “It definitely affects the future a lot. I think if Serena and Venus saw this today, two 18-year-olds, both African-Americans, playing at the WTA 500 level, I think they’d be proud and I think we’re both a product of their legacy.
I’m grateful I’ve had those examples to follow and I hope I can be an example myself,» Gauff added. When Gauff was just 15 years old at Wimbledon 2019, she stunned Venus Williams. Unfortunately for Gauff, she didn’t get the chance to perform. to Serena Williams.