Coco Gauff Defeats Elina Svitolina To Retain The Auckland Classic Title

Femi Onasanya By Femi Onasanya - Sports Reporter
4 Min Read

Rising from a setdown to overcome Elina Svitolina, American teenager Coco Gauff successfully defended her Auckland Classic championship.

Seven times in her eight career WTA singles finals, the US Open champion prevailed 6-7 (4-7) 6-3 6-3.

Gauff, who is 19 years old, has already won 29 of her previous 33 singles matches.

Gauff has never advanced past the fourth round of the Australian Open, but judging by her performance leading up to the first major of the year, she could be set to break that record in 2024.

Although Gauff would pass with remarkable poise, her encounter with second-seeded Svitolina proved to be a far harsher test.

The 25th-ranked Ukrainian, who came back from maternity leave after just nine months, won the tie-break after Gauff wasted two set points in the second set, losing 5-4.

Throughout the two tournament editions, that was Gauff’s first and last set loss.

Before the American could serve out for the victory in the eighth game of the decider, she broke Svitolina’s service three times in a remarkable second-set reaction.

In other news, Elena Rybakina defeated Aryna Sabalenka in a commanding straight-set victory to capture the Brisbane International Championship.

The contest was a rematch of the Australian Open final from the previous year, where Sabalenka overcame a set deficit to win her maiden major championship; however, Rybakina defeated the Belarusian 6-0, 6-3 this time.

The fourth-ranked Kazakh, who made a strong statement prior to this year’s first major, defeated world number two Sabalenka, who came into the Brisbane final riding a 15-match winning streak in Australia.

Despite the fact that neither player had dropped a set on the way to the championship, Rybakina dominated the first game of Sunday.

With three consecutive breaks of serve, the 24-year-old easily won the first set in just 25 minutes, without receiving a response from her opponent from Belarus.

In the second set, Sabalenka gave up another break and trailed 2-0, but in the third game, the former world number one broke back to end the run of games against her.

Rybakina put an end to any chance of a comeback quickly, regaining her two-game lead right away and completing a decisive triumph.

As the first Grand Slam of the year approaches, Rybakina’s advantage against Sabalenka in their head-to-head record was also reduced to 5-3.

In the Brisbane men’s doubles final, German top seeds Tim Putz and Kevin Krawietz were defeated 7-6 (7-3) 5-7 12-10 by British player Lloyd Glasspool and his Dutch partner Jean-Julien Rojer after winning a match tie-break.

The top two seeds in the men’s singles final on Sunday will face off against one other, with 20-year-old Dane Holger Rune facing Grigor Dimitrov.

Beginning on January 14, in Melbourne, is the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam of the year.

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By Femi Onasanya Sports Reporter
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Femi is a sport enthusiast, writer and commentator. Passionate about Sports and physical therapy with a flair for writing.