USA’s Coco Gauff reactys as she plays Belarus’s Aryna Sabalenka during the US Open tennis tournament women’s singles final match at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York on September 9, 2023. (Photo by ANGELA WEISS / AFP) (Photo by ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images)
Angela Weiss | Afp | Getty Images
Coco Gauff won the U.S. Open women’s final, becoming the latest Black American woman to leave a history-making mark on the most sacred grounds of U.S. tennis
Gauff bested Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus on Saturday 6-2 in the third set.
Gauff’s upset win at Arthur Ashe Stadium in Flushing Meadows, New York City, etches her name into the history books alongside other Black American women’s tennis icons like Serena Williams, Venus Williams and Althea Gibson.
Gibson won the U.S. National Championship women’s singles titles in 1957 and 1958, a forerunner of the U.S. Open. Venus, the older Williams sister, won the U.S. Open in 2001 and 2002 while Serena took the championships of 1999, 2002, 2008, 2012, 2013 and 2014.
Those six U.S. Open singles titles by Serena Williams are only matched by Chris Evert’s half-dozen championships in the tournament’s modern era, 1975-78 and 1980 and 1982.
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Coming into Saturday, Gauff, 19, of Florida, has won five singles titles but was still chasing a title in one of the world’s four major tournaments (the U.S., French and Australian Opens and Wimbledon).
She’s come close before as the French Open runner-up in 2022 and when she reached the quarterfinals in Flushing Meadows last year.
It was in the low 80s when the first ball was served at about 4:15 p.m. EDT in Queens and the roof of Arthur Ashe Stadium was closed to mitigate some of the heat.
The temperature was better Saturday than the withering conditions — mid- to high-90s — that have plagued this tournament.
Correction: Coco Gauff won the U.S. Open in three sets. A headline on an earlier version of this article misstated that.