US Open champion Coco Gauff sends a message to her eight-year-old self… seen dancing in the stands of Arthur Ashe Stadium: ‘Don’t lose that dream’
US Open champion Coco Gauff has opened up the incredible video of her – aged just eight – dancing in Arthur Ashe Stadium, saying she would tell that young girl: ‘Don’t lose that dream!’
Gauff won her first Grand Slam title with a three-set win over Aryna Sabalenka on Saturday, four years after she broke through with a remarkable run at Wimbledon aged 15.
The video, which shows Gauff dancing to ‘Call Me Maybe’ on Ashe resurfaced throughout her run towards this year’s final.
After returning to the 24,000-seater stadium to land the biggest title of her career, Gauff was asked what she would say to that girl if she could speak to her now.
‘She had the dream, but I don’t know if she fully believed it,’ the champion said.
A video, which shows Gauff dancing to ‘Call Me Maybe’ on Arthur Ashe, resurfaced recently
Gauff won a first Grand Slam title with a three-set win over Aryna Sabalenka on the same court
After her US Open win, Gauff said: ‘I would tell her: “Don’t lose the dream. Keep having fun.”
‘As a kid, you have so many dreams. You know, as you get older sometimes it can fiddle away. I would tell her: “Don’t lose that dream”.’
Gauff conceded that there have been times over the past four years where her own mind has wavered.
‘Honestly, I felt like I lost a little bit of the dream as this journey has gone on,’ she said.
‘I would tell her: “Don’t lose the dream. Keep having fun.” As you can see in the video, I loved being on Ashe, whether it was in the crowd or on the court.
‘So I would just tell her: “Just keep working hard and keep believing in that dream and don’t let the doubters diminish that.”
Gauff will move up to a new career-high ranking of No 3 after winning her home major. She has long been tipped for stardom but the 19-year-old says it was those childhood trips to Flushing Meadows which sparked her imagination of winning Grand Slam titles.
The 19-year-old was overcome with emotion after beating Sabalenka in Saturday’s final
Gauff will move up to a new career-high ranking of No 3 after winning her home major
‘I think the first was when I was eight and I would come – like three times, three or four years in a row – to see Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day and I was just watching players compete on this court,’ she said.
‘When I was 13 I think or 14 when I played US Open juniors, I watched the men’s final that year, so I had those envisions of myself then.’
Gauff also had to overcome defeat in last year’s French Open, when she was handily beaten by Iga Swiatek.
‘I don’t know if they caught it on camera but I watched Iga lift up that trophy, and I watched her the whole time. I said: “I’m not going to take my eyes off her, because I want to feel what that felt like for her”,’ Gauff recalled.
‘That felt like craziness today lifting this trophy. It hasn’t sunken in and I think it probably will maybe in a week or so.’