‘Comeback kid’: 15-year-old wins epic match at Wimbledon

Fifteen-year-old Cori Gauff is being hailed as "the comeback kid" after she saved two match points before going on to beat Polona Hercog and book her place in the fourth round of Wimbledon.

The US tennis sensation battled back from losing the first set and being 5-2 down in the second to win 3-6 7-6 (9-7) 7-5 on Centre Court.

Gauff, known as Coco, is the youngest female player to reach the second week of the tournament since Jennifer Capriati made it to the semi-finals aged 15 in 1991.

Image: Gauff is the youngest female player to reach the fourth round since Jennifer Capriati in 1991

She is the youngest player to qualify for Wimbledon in the professional era, winning three matches last week against higher-ranked women in the preliminary rounds before knocking out five-time champion Venus Williams in the first round of the main competition.

:: Reaction from Wimbledon after Cori Gauff continues her remarkable journey


On Friday evening, Gauff, who is 313th in the world, was a set down and trailed 5-2 in the second against the 28-year-old Slovenian, who is ranked 60.

With Gauff serving at 30-40, Hercog was a point from victory. But the teenager came up with a backhand slice winner that dropped right on the line.

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Then at 5-3, Hercog had her second match point but she double-faulted and the second set eventually went to a tie-break in the round three clash.

Gauff, who entered as a wildcard, pounded her chest and shouted "let's go, come on!" to celebrate a 32-stroke point in the tie-break that forced a third set.

Parents of US player Cori Gauff, father Corey (L) and mother Candi (R), celebrate after Cori Gauff beat Slovenia's Polona Hercog during their women's singles third round match on the fifth day of the 2019 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 5, 2019. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE        (Photo credit should read DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)
Image: Gauff's father Corey and mother Candi were jubilant after the victory

Her mother, Candi Gauff, stood up and pumped her fist, yelling "yes!" as thousands of spectators also rose from their seats to applaud the teenager.

A third set was the last thing Hercog needed as she had a medical timeout and it looked like the youth of Gauff would carry her through as she raced into a 4-1 lead.

The Slovenian fought her way back to 4-4 but, as she applied ice to her legs at the change of ends, the longer it went on the more likely Gauff was to win.

And that was how it turned out as the American took the final set 7-5.

"Right now, I'm just super-relieved that it's over," said Gauff.

"I always knew that I could come back, no matter what the score is."

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