WIMBLEDON, England (CBSMiami/AP) — Delray Beach teen sensation Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff saved two match points in the second set and went on to beat Polona Hercog of Slovenia in the third round at Wimbledon.
Gauff, who is playing at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time, won 3-6, 7-6 (7), 7-5 on Centre Court.
Gauff saved one match point while trailing 5-2 in the second set. She went on to hold serve but then faced another in the next game, set up by an ace from Hercog. The 28-year-old Slovenian player then double-faulted on the next point.
Gauff beat five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams in the first round and 2017 semifinalist Magdalena Rybarikova in the second. Both of those matches were on No. 1 Court, the second biggest stadium at the All England Club.
Gauff advances to the Round of 16, where she will face Simona Halep on Monday.
COCO’S FAMILY REACTs AS THEY WATCH LATEST VICTORY:
Gauff’s family and friends watched her hard-fought victory from the family’s restaurant, The Paradise Sports Lounge, in Delray Beach.
Eddie Odom Junior, Gauff’s grandfather, says he’s always told Coco to embrace her tall height.
“I told her don’t feel like cus you tall long arms, you are different. Yeah, you’re different, but you’re special.”
“The athletic world is looking for people just like you. So, be proud of yourself.”
Coco’s aunt, Joi Odom, says her grandparents are from New Orleans, so they’re handing out these beads to show they’re one family. No matter what, they’re already proud.
“As a family, we are excited about what she’s become. This is something that has been a process,” Joi Odom said.
“When you practice hard, you practice to be successful. Not to lose. To win.”
“Not going to win all the time, but the idea I told her is to win with class and lose with class.”
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)