The youngest athlete to qualify for Wimbledon just beat the five-time champion, Venus Williams.

Tennis sensation, Cori ‘Coco’ Gauff, reacted to the win by thanking her parents for giving up “all their time” to give her the best chance at success.

The 15-year-old Floridian amazed the crowd in the first round of women’s singles at the Wimbledon tournament on Monday by defeating her idol, Venus Williams.

Cori, now one of the biggest prospects in tennis, said the road was long, but thanks to the sacrifice of her parents, she has what she needs to become a tennis champion.

The Daily Mail reports that the teen who started playing tennis at the age of 7 said from the beginning her dad, who is her coach, and her mom, who is her homeschool teacher, trained her to compete on the highest level.

She said after the match:

“I know [my parents] are super happy, my dad was just jumping up every time I won a point. I’m just so happy and blessed that they really just spent all their time on me and my brothers and making sure that we’re successful.”

Cori, who was born into a sports family, relocated from Atlanta to Delray Beach in Florida for its elite facilities. And she is finally starting to see the sacrifices her parents put into her training pay off.

However, she admits it’s not always easy having her dad, former Georgia State University basketball player, always be her coach.

She told the Sun Sentinel:

“When we were younger, it was pretty easy. And then when I turned, I would say, 12 or 13, we used to argue, because he used to be annoying because he would bring tennis home, and he’s always around me. So now we talked, and we understand each other now more.”

Cori’s mother, Candi Gauff, sometimes had to stand in as a mediator between her husband and their daughter. Candi said:

“There was a breaking point, and I stopped it and went to the center of the court and said, ‘This is Switzerland. This is where, if you have a problem, you come here and discuss it.’”

Cori and her father have since improved their communication.

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The young tennis star said she stays grounded with the help of her family.

About the author

Tiffani is a writer for Dearly. She is from New York City. Prior to working for Dearly she covered fashion news and managed social media for various digital media outlets.

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