Wimbledon wonder: Cori Gauff, 15, becomes youngest qualifier

 

 

LONDON, United Kingdom – Fifteen-year-old Cori Gauff of the United States made history when she became the youngest player to qualify for Wimbledon.

Gauff will also be the first 15-year-old to compete in the main draw since Britain's Laura Robson in 2009 after defeating 19th seed Greet Minnen of Belgium 6-1, 6-1, on Thursday, June 27  (Friday, June 28, Philippine time).

"I can do anything I put my mind to," said the 301 world-ranked Gauff, who was playing in qualifying on a wild card. 

The night before the match, Gauff even took a science test remotely for her school back in Florida.

Gauff, the youngest to earn a spot in the main draw at 15 years and 122 days, said she idolizes 23-time Grand Slam winner Serena Williams.

A native of Delray Beach, Gauff reached the US Open girls' final in 2017, then ruled the French Open girls' singles the following year.  

 

Remember the name. Aged 15 years and 122 days, America’s @CocoGauff becomes the youngest #Wimbledon qualifier in the Open Era after beating Greet Minnen 6-1, 6-1 pic.twitter.com/PSWlOiRNkB — Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) June 27, 2019

 

Lesley Kerkhove, meawhile, ended wildcard Sabine Lisicki's hopes of a fairytale run into the main draw. 

The 2013 runner-up from Germany had scored consecutive wins for the first time since November to reach the third round.

But after a first-set 22-minute rout, Kerkhove hit back to win 0-6, 6-4, 6-4 and make the main draw for the first time.

Belgium's Ruben Bemelmans was also making history as the 31-year-old qualified for Wimbledon for a modern era record sixth time by beating American Donald Young 6-4, 6-4, 6-1. 

Australian 19-year-old Alexei Popyrin defeated American Bjorn Fratangelo 6-3, 7-6 (7/6), 6-7 (4/7), 7-6 (8/6). 

Top seed Corentin Moutet, 20, of France qualified with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-4 win and will be making his main draw debut.

Italy will have 9 men in the main draw after Andrea Arnaboldi and Salvatore Caruso qualified. 

Arnaboldi battled past Evgeny Karlovskiy 6-4, 6-3, 3-6, 4-6, 6-3 while Caruso knocked out Brayden Schnur of Canada, 6-3, 6-2, 6-1. – Rappler.com