January 27th, 2020

Florida’s Kenin Into 1st Slam QF at Australian Open

General News Pro Tennis

Sofia Kenin of Pembroke Pines, Fla., is experiencing her breakout tournament at the 2020 Australian Open after beating one of the hottest young players on tour, fellow Floridian CoCo Gauff, to advance into the quarterfinals in Melbourne.

The No. 14-seeded Kenin beat the 15-year-old Gauff 6-7(5), 6-3, 6-0.

“I knew [Gauff is] playing well,” said the 21-year-old Kenin. “I was just really happy with the way that I was able to handle my emotions and just fight through every point….I want to show who I am, show my best tennis, show why I’m there, why I belong. I’m doing that.”

Gauff had beaten former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka to reach the round of 16.

“I’m definitely going to savor this and continue to kind of build and get better to work for moments like this, moments like that last match,” Gauff said afterward. “Even today, even though I lost, I still had a lot of fun. I mean, now looking back, I’m not as disappointed anymore.”

Kenin will next face Ons Jabeur of Tunisia in the quarterfinals after Jabeur eliminated No. 27 seed Wang Qiang of China, who had previously ousted Serena Williams.

“I’ve played [Jabeur] in Mallorca last year,” said Kenin. “I know her game pretty well. She’s playing well. It was funny, after the match, we’re both biking next to each other. She’s like, ‘Good job.’ I’m like, ‘You too.’ It was fun, a funny moment. She’s like, ‘Are you feeling tired?’ ‘No, I’m good.’ She’s like, ‘Yeah, me too.’ I’m like, ‘Okay, I’ll see you on Tuesday then!'”