Cori Gauff, 18, couldn’t hide her happiness after reaching her maiden Grand Slam semifinal as she was thrilled with the performance she delivered versus Sloane Stephens in the French Open quarterfinal. Gauff, who suffered a French Open quarterfinal defeat last year, saw off 2018 French Open finalist Stephens 7-5 6-2 to reach the semifinal at Roland Garros.
“I feel so happy right now,” she said. “Words can’t explain, last year in the quarterfinal was a tough loss for me but it made me stronger to better prepare for moments like today and moments like the next round,” Gauff said, per Eurosport.
Gauff: I did a much better job today
At the US Open last year, Gauff suffered a straight-set defeat versus Stephens. In their second meeting, Gauff performed much better and beat her fellow compatriot for her maiden Grand Slam semifinal.
“Last time I played Stephens I lost so I’m glad that today went different. I knew there would be shots I should have made and shots she would make that no other player can, so I think it was a mental challenge. I believe in myself and, even last year, I was too focused on fulfilling other people’s expectations.
But now I’m just enjoying life, and no matter how good or bad my career is, I think I’m a great person. Your results in your job don’t define you as a person,” Gauff added. Gauff now has a great chance to reach her maiden Grand Slam final as she plays 59th-ranked Martina Trevisan in the semifinal.
“Yeah, for sure. I definitely feel confident on the court. I feel like it (clay) really suits my game. Yeah, and I feel like, you know, the previous tournaments this clay season I had some good wins but it wasn’t ‘t really any outstanding results,” Gauff said.
“I feel like it gave me a lot to learn from, and I think I’m taking those tough matches that I lost this season and really learning from them and I guess showing that I’m doing better.”