Gauff Cruises To Biggest Career Title In Cincinnati, Tops Muchova For First Masters

by Staff | August 20th, 2023, 10:48 pm
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Coco Gauff moved into the favorites conversation for the US Open with an triumphant win Sunday at the Cincinnati Masters taking her biggest career title topping Karolina Muchova 6-3, 6-4.

The 19-year-old Gauff becomes the event’s first teen champion and she wins her first 1000-level title. It’s her fifth overall title.

“This is unbelievable,” Gauff said on court. “Especially after everything I went through earlier this summer in Europe. There’s been a lot of ups and downs the last couple of weeks.”

Gauff rallied yesterday over No. 1 Iga Swiatek for her biggest match win, and now her biggest title. This all comes after a first round exit at Wimbledon by Sofia Kenin.

“I’m really happy with how I was able to manage this week,” Gauff said to the WTA. “I got a huge win yesterday, a big one today. Karolina, she’s not an easy player. It’s really good to see her back at the top. I think she’s one of the most talented players on tour.”

In this battle of the last two French runner-ups, Gauff powered through a 5-break opener, breaking Muchova at 5-3 then serving it out. In the second, the American raced to a 5-2 advantage before Muchova got a mini-rally to close.

“Today I really won it off of breaking serve, to be honest,” Gauff said. “I wasn’t really serving as good as I did against Iga. I don’t know if it was nerves. I wasn’t that nervous, to be honest. Also a combination of the long match yesterday. I wasn’t serving as well.

“I think that’s what makes a champion, is how you’re doing on the days you aren’t feeling so great. I’m glad I was able to push through.”

Like Gauff, Muchova was also in her first Masters final. She had just upset No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka for a second time yesterday. And she’ll still make her Top 10 debut on Monday.

“I was a little tired coming into the match,” Muchova said. “I knew I have to play fast today, not be in the rallies, because it’s been many three-setters here for me, long matches, tough matches. To play day after day and not have the day off, it’s very physical. In that, I was the worse one today.”

Since adding Brad Gilbert in Washington, Gauff is now 11-1 with two titles and goes into her home Slam as the hottest player in women’s tennis right now.

“I’m going to give it my all at the US Open,” Gauff added. “If things go great, that’s exciting. If not, I go back and work hard and get ready for the next one.”

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