Betway’s global tennis ambassador reflects on an unforgettable US Open, highlighting Coco Gauff’s first Grand Slam win and Novak Djokovic’s record-breaking achievements.
Coco Gauff’s Victory Marks a Significant Moment for Tennis
There were doubts about the future of tennis following the retirements of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Serena Williams, but Coco Gauff’s win at the US Open came at the perfect time, particularly in the United States.
As Venus and Serena were Coco’s idols, her debut on the Grand Slam stage during the first year of the US Open after Serena’s retirement holds a symbolic meaning. Serena carried the public interest in this tournament for many years, making Coco’s win even more poetic.
Although she didn’t perform her best in every match, including the final, what impressed me the most was her ability to adjust her strategy and turn average days into three-set victories.
In the first set of the final, she tried to match Aryna Sabalenka’s aggressive play but realized it wasn’t working. She then focused on making Sabalenka hit as many shots as possible and relied on her own agility. She adopted a mindset of being a volume shooter, forcing Sabalenka to beat her multiple times in a rally, with the support of the passionate crowd.
Sabalenka struggled to handle this pressure, although she deserves credit for becoming the new World No.1. While it might not be the US Open title she desired, it is still a remarkable achievement.
An Exciting Era for Women’s Tennis
I am thrilled for my former coach, Brad Gilbert. There may have been moments when he questioned whether he would coach again, especially someone with the potential to win a Grand Slam, but I am not surprised by the success he has had with Coco.
I see many similarities between her and my own career 20 years ago, but the difference is that Coco won’t settle for just one Grand Slam title. With the current state of women’s tennis, where different players have won each of the four Slams this year, there is a level of competitiveness and parity that suggests more players have the potential to claim multiple titles rather than just a few dominating forces.
Novak Djokovic’s Unmatched Dominance
Novak Djokovic’s consistency and ability to win tournaments continuously is astonishing. He is perhaps the most reliable player the sport has ever seen. It’s difficult to argue against him being the best ever when looking at his remarkable record. He has now tied Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam titles, but he has his sights set on more.
It seems like an impossible task to bet against Djokovic on any given day, on any surface, and in any format. After reaching 25 Grand Slam titles, he will essentially compete against his own legacy as there is no greater achievement left for him. The decision to continue will depend on his motivation and his physical condition. Health becomes even more vital towards the end of one’s career. However, given his current form, it is not an exaggeration to say that Djokovic is currently the best athlete in the world.