5 Fun Facts to Know About 15-Year-Old Tennis Phenom Cori 'Coco' Gauff
Cori "Coco" Gauff is a name that's been followed by praised by everyone from Michelle Obama to Jaden Smith—and for good reason!
The 15-year-old tennis phenom made it to a fourth-round match at Wimbledon (and even beat her childhood idol, Venus Williams), before losing to Simona Halep.
You're probably as curious about the superstar as we are, so we've dug up five fun facts to get your better acquainted with the athlete.
1. She Reminds Serena Williams of Venus
"She actually reminds me of Venus, kind of, her body and everything," Serena told The Guardian, shortly before Cori and Serena's sister had their match. "She's such a fantastic young lady. She works very hard. Every time I see her out there working, training, her and her dad—it reminds me of the time where I was out there with my dad. I can't help but look inside of myself and be proud and be happy for her. It's really nice to see."
2. She's a Huge Jaden Smith Fan
You can only imagine the excitement Cori felt when Jaden gave her love on Twitter, saying, "You're the one!" While still competing in Wimbledon, she was asked at a press conference whether she was more excited about winning or Jaden Smith's album Erys coming out, and she said "both." She's also promoted him on her Instagram.
3. Spirituality Has Gotten Her Through Her Competitions
"We are very spiritual people, so you have to be spiritually in tune with whatever you believe, [and] that's going to be the guiding principle behind your development…" Cori's dad Corey told Black Tennis Magazine. "Cori has never gone on the court one time without praying for herself and her opponent. I think that's so important because it's easy to get away from some of these simple principles that make these kids well-rounded."
4. She's Had Her Sights Set on Stardom From an Incredibly Young Age
Cori's known what she wants since before she was even in grade school. Her dad recalls the two of them watching a 2009 finals match, won by Serena Williams, after which her dad said, "She's the G.O.A.T." Once he explained to his then-four-year-old daughter that it means "Greatest of All Time," Cori immediately said, "I want to be the G.O.A.T."
5. She Comes From an Athletic Family
Cori's parents were both college athletes, with her dad playing basketball at Georgia State University, and her mom running track at Florida State University. Her parents encouraged her to try sports early on, including basketball and track.
You can learn a lot from playing sports at a young age. HERE are the lessons one of our writers learned from being a high school athlete.