Coco Gauff shares emotional exchange with her dad after ‘fighting’ with umpire | Tennis | Sport

Coco Gauff was praised by her father Corey for how she handled herself during a heated exchange with a chair umpire at the Dubai Open. The World No.3 was playing Karolina Pliskova in the round of 16 when she hit a serve that was called out, which the Czech star was unable to return.

However, the official called it out after Pliskova attempted to return the serve, and when Gauff challenged the call, the ball actually landed in. But instead of awarding the US Open champion the point, the umpire told her to hit a first serve, which left the teenager incensed.

Despite her disappointment, Gauff kept her cool as she tried to reason with the official, who refused to grant her request for the supervisor to come out on court. When the discussion ended, the tennis star kept her composure and overturned a one-set deficit to win the match 2-6, 6-4, 6-3.

Following the match, Corey posted a lengthy tribute to his daughter on Instagram expressing his delight with how she handled herself on the court. “So proud of my daughter. Standing up for yourself and fighting for fairness,” he wrote. “You have the strength of your grandmothers who are 2 of the strongest women we know.

“While being passionate you remained respectful as you articulated your argument. The scene is so familiar to women and women of color pleading and fighting to be treated fairly and respectfully by their male counterparts.

“You are an incredible example to women and your generation on what it means to fight and despite not getting the outcome you wanted you stood up for yourself and successfully moved on. You are becoming the young woman I prayed for. God Bless you.”

Gauff took to the comments and replied: “Aw thank you Dad I love you so much! Thanks for being the best father. I would have never become the person I am without you.”

Gauff faced Pliskova, who has rediscovered her best form in the early stages of 2024. She won the Cluj-Napoca title which was her first since 2020.

She also made the Doha semifinals, but injury forced her to withdraw from her match against eventual champion Iga Swiatek. The World No. 36 had won her last 11 matches, but Gauff snapped the streak after one hour and 53 minutes of play to win the 23rd of her last 25 meetings against players ranked outside the top 20.

Commenting on the disagreement with the umpire, Gauff said: “I think it just fueled me. I wanna watch back the video. I feel confident that it was after. It’s ok. It’s just one point. It happens in tennis. Players make mistakes. Everybody makes mistakes… It kind of went upward from there for me.”

However, Gauff’s run at the Dubai Open is now over after she was outlasted by Ukriane’s Anna Kalinskaya in three sets.

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