Gauff Digs Deep to Reach First Australian Open Semifinal in a Gripping Battle
Coco Gauff’s quest for Grand Slam glory took a thrilling turn on Tuesday as she overcame a determined Marta Kostyuk 7-6(6), 6-7(3), 6-2 to reach her first Australian Open semifinal. In a rollercoaster match that stretched over three hours under the scorching Melbourne sun, Gauff showcased her resilience and fighting spirit to come back from the brink on multiple occasions.
The 19-year-old American, reigning US Open champion, faced an early scare as Kostyuk, ranked 37th in the world, raced to a 5-1 lead in the opening set. But Gauff, refusing to crumble under pressure, clawed her way back with relentless determination, winning five straight games to force a tiebreak. The tension crackled in the Rod Laver Arena as both players traded blows, but Gauff emerged victorious, taking the first set with a flourish.
The second set proved just as tight, with both players holding serve until late. With Gauff serving for the match at 5-3, Kostyuk unleashed a barrage of powerful shots, breaking serve and forcing a tiebreak of her own. This time, it was the Ukrainian who prevailed, sending the match into a nerve-wracking decider.
Undeterred, Gauff upped the tempo in the final set, dictating play with her potent first serve and aggressive backhand. Kostyuk, visibly tiring after the intensity of the previous sets, struggled to keep pace. Gauff seized her opportunity, breaking serve twice to secure a hard-fought 6-2 victory and a place in the semifinals.
“I’m really proud of the fight I showed today,” Gauff said on court, the relief clear in her voice. “Marta’s a tough opponent, and every time we play, it’s a battle. I just kept digging deep and trying to stay positive, and eventually it paid off.”
Gauff’s victory extends her remarkable winning streak at Grand Slams to 12 matches, the longest active streak on the women’s tour. Now she faces either defending champion Aryna Sabalenka or Barbora Krejcikova in the semifinals, with a potential Grand Slam final date with Iga Swiatek looming large.
Whether she lifts the trophy or not, Gauff’s thrilling victory against Kostyuk served as a powerful reminder of her immense talent and mental fortitude. The young American has shown the world that she is not just a promising prospect, but a force to be reckoned with on the grandest stage of tennis. The Australian Open semifinal awaits, and with her fighting spirit on display, Gauff promises to deliver another captivating performance.