Enjoying the loud crowd support in Arthur Ashe Stadium, American Coco Gauff reached her first US Open quarterfinal with a 7-5 7-5 victory over Zhang Shuai of China.
With both players contesting their first round of 16 at Flushing Meadows, the 18-year-old Gauff, the youngest player remaining in the draw, had to fight hard for every game, but managed to edge the 33-year-old Zhang, the oldest player left in the draw.
Most games were tense, and could have gone either way. That applies to the entire match.
In the first set, Zhang established a 2-0 lead, but Gauff battled back to level. A few games later it was Zhang who broke back to get even at 4-4. Moving like a gazelle in her signature New Balance shoes, Gauff managed to win three consecutive games and edge the tight opening set.
The second set went with serve early on, although it was just as indecisive. Then, after a love hold in the seventh game, Zhang earned a break, helped by Gauff’s double fault. The world No.36’s lead was short-lived. Laser-focused and hungry for success, the 12th-seeded Gauff won all the remaining games from 5-3 down, including a love break in the eleventh game of the set.
Gauff’s quarterfinal opponent will be seed No.17 Caroline Garcia, who recorded her first victory over Alison Riske-Amritraj in their fourth career meeting, 6-4 6-1. In Louis Armstrong Stadium, Garcia converted her first break point to take the tight opening set, and proceeded to cruise through the remainder of the match.