USA's Cori 'Coco' Gauff, 15, becomes youngest Wimbledon qualifier in Open era

Cori “Coco” Gauff isn’t old enough to drive a car, but don’t let her age fool you, she’s well on her way to becoming tennis’ next star.

At 15 years and 122 days, Gauff knocked out 21-year-old Greet Minnen of Belgium to qualify for Wimbledon, making her the youngest player to do so in the Open era.

Her 6-1, 6-1 win earned her a place in the ladies’ singles portion of the tournament, which is set to begin on July 1.

“I don’t know about any of the records I break until after, until somebody tells me,” Gauff told Wimbledon reporters. “I just feel really blessed that I’m able to. I’m thankful that my parents never put any limitations on my goals, because sometimes parents can do that.”

Gauff received a call just eight days prior informing her of her wild-card invitation, per Wimbledon’s official site. At the time, she was online shopping but quickly turned her attention toward tennis.

Now, she will be the youngest player at Wimbledon since Laura Robson did so in 2009, also at 15 years old.

“I think my first memory was watching Serena play Wimbledon,” Gauff said.

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U.S. tennis player Cori "Coco" Gauff
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U.S. tennis player Cori "Coco" Gauff
PARIS, FRANCE May 23. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Kaja Juvan of Slovenia during their qualification match on court seven at the 2019 French Open Tennis Tournament at Roland Garros on May 23rd 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE May 23. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Kaja Juvan of Slovenia during their qualification match on court seven at the 2019 French Open Tennis Tournament at Roland Garros on May 23rd 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FLORIDA - MARCH 22: Cori Gauff serves to Daria Kasatkina of Russia during the Miami Open Presented by Itau at Hard Rock Stadium March 22, 2019 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE May 23. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Kaja Juvan of Slovenia during their qualification match on court seven at the 2019 French Open Tennis Tournament at Roland Garros on May 23rd 2019 in Paris, France. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Twelve. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Dasha Lopatetskaya of the Ukraine in the Junior Girls' Singles Quarter Final match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 7th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images
2018 US Open Tennis Tournament- Day Eleven. Cori Gauff of the United States in action against Oksana Selekhmeteva of Russia in the Junior Girls' Singles round three match on Court Seventeen at the 2018 US Open Tennis Tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 6th, 2018 in Flushing, Queens, New York City. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 12: Cori Gauff of the United States during the Girls' Singles Competition during the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club at Wimbledon on July 12, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
LONDON - ENGLAND JULY 09: Cori Gauff of USA in action against Gergana Topalova of Bulgaria (not pictured) during The Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championship at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club at Wimbledon on July 9th, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Simon Bruty/Any Chance/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 09: CORI GAUFF (USA) during day fourteen match of the 2018 French Open 2018 on June 9, 2018, at Stade Roland-Garros in Paris, France. (Photo by Chaz Niell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 09: CORI GAUFF (USA) during day fourteen match of the 2018 French Open 2018 on June 9, 2018, at Stade Roland-Garros in Paris, France. (Photo by Chaz Niell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JUNE 09: Cori Gauff of The United States celebrates victory with the trophy following the girls singles final against Caty McNally of The United States during day fourteen of the 2018 French Open at Roland Garros on June 9, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)
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Nonetheless, Gauff is no stranger to making history. At 13, she became the youngest girl to make a U.S. Open girls final and is among the youngest winners of the French Open girls championship at 14 years old.

Earlier in the year, she became the youngest to win a Grand Slam qualifying match at the French Open, also at 15.

"My parents always told me to shoot as high as I wanted to,” Gauff added. “And I’m just happy that, not only did they accept my goals, they really sacrificed everything to make sure I get there.”

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