Coming off her run to the French Open finals, expectations are high for Coco Gauff at The Championships 2022 Wimbledon. On Tuesday, the recent high school grad started her tournament with a 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 win over Elena-Gabriela Ruse of Romania.
Under windy conditions, Coco started slow with her game seeming out of sorts. Ruse played an aggressive first set that put the rising star on her heels from the first point. After going down a break, it appeared she was settling in when she got the match back on serve at 2-2, but that was the end of her first set highlights. Ruse ultimately took the first set 6-2.
The No. 11 seed came out much more herself in the second set. She regrouped and began hitting the winners and powerful serves, Coco has become known for. She was able to keep the lead and won the second set 6-3.
After jumping out to a lead, where it looked like Coco would get the quick win, Ruse charged back, evening things up at 3-3. From there, it was a back and forth contest. Ruse continued to make crucial mistakes, but Gauff seemed unable to capitalize on the errors. However, at 5-5 after failing to convert four previous break points, Coco finally took the lead when Ruse double-faulted. Serving for the match at 6-5, Coco wasted no time securing the victory.
This was a gutsy performance for Coco. She proved that she has what it takes to grind out the win–even when her game isn’t going perfectly. Moving forward, she will definitely need to do better on break points as she only converted 4 of 25 in this contest. As the competition gets stiffer, she can’t afford to leave that many points on the table, and that’s something she and her team are probably discussing right now.
Up next, Gauff plays another Romanian, Mihaela Buzarnescu, on Thursday. Should she get past that match to the third round, Coco would find herself in an all American contest against either Lauren Davis or Amanda Anisimova.