Australian Open 2023: Teen star Coco Gauff wins all-American clash to reach last 16

A maiden Grand Slam title for seventh seed Gauff would make Coco Gauff the youngest Melbourne champion since 16-year-old Martina Hingis 26 years ago.

Coco Gauff’s bid to become the youngest Australian Open champion since 1997 gathered pace Friday with a straight-sets win over fellow American Bernarda Pera.

The 18-year-old won 6-3, 6-2 on Rod Laver Arena to set up a last-16 clash against either the 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia or Ukrainian Kateryna Baindl.

Gauff headed into the first major of the year on a high after winning her third WTA title at the Auckland Classic earlier this month.

She admitted she “got lucky” in her tight second-round victory over Emma Raducanu in a battle of tennis prodigies.

Gauff is one of two teenagers left in the women’s draw. The other is 17-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova, who plays Marketa Vondrousova in an all-Czech third-round clash on Saturday.

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