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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Saturday May 11, 2024

Coco Gauff

Coco Gauff overcame 15 double faults to defeat Jaqueline Cristian in Rome on Saturday.

Photo Source: Mark Peterson/ Corleve

Coco Gauff continues to be plagued by double-faults on the clay this spring. Never mind the panic though – the American overcame her self-made obstacle and outlasted Romanian Jaqueline Cristian, 6-1, 0-6, 6-3, in a weird scramble of a match on Saturday night at Rome’s Foro Italico to reach the round of 16.

Tennis Express

Gauff has tossed in 38 double faults in her last three matches, but continues to scratch and claw warrior style as she seeks to hit her stride before Roland-Garros.

On Saturday she overcame a torrid streak from 68th-ranked Cristian, who won seven consecutive games from the start of the second set, to improve to 10-4 lifetime at Rome, and 23-7 on the season.

Gauff managed to win 17 of the 27 second-serve points that did not feature a double-fault, and saved seven of ten break points, including the only one she faced in the decider, to win in two hours and four minutes, and deny Cristian (0-5) her first Top 10 win.

It wasn’t pretty, but for the third-ranked Gauff and her coach Brad Gilbert, who authored the tennis bible “Winning Ugly,” it’s another victory and a chance to right the ship next round.

Gauff will face Spain’s Paula Badosa, who defeated Diana Shnaider 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, for a spot in the quarterfinals on Monday.

The American is joined by compatriot Madison Keys in the round of 16. The No.18 seed topped 12th-seeded Beatriz Haddad Maia, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3.


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