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May 11, 2022

Coco Gauff

Roma, Italia

Press Conference

C. GAUFF/M. Brengle

6-2, 6-4

THE MODERATOR: How did you feel out there, Coco?

COCO GAUFF: I felt pretty good today. Madison is definitely a player that's difficult to play because she plays a lot of weird shots, she makes you earn every point. I'm glad I was able to come out with the win today.

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. I saw you on the practice court after the match. What was the mindset there? What did you feel you needed to work on?

COCO GAUFF: I think for me, it's just because I'm playing Sakkari tomorrow. They hit the ball completely different so I needed some more pace.

Also sometimes I just like hitting some balls after the match because, you know, not every match, even though you might win, you might not always feel good. I try to end on something that makes you feel good.

Q. How are you feeling through two matches in Rome?

COCO GAUFF: Right now I feel great. I mean, even last year I had a good result here. I really enjoy playing here. Yeah, I think these conditions kind of suit me.

Q. What are some of the things that you do when you're in Rome? Do you give yourself a chance to get gelato, walk around?

COCO GAUFF: I've been walking around. My favorite thing to do here is definitely eating. I really love eating pasta, eating all the different desserts.

I'm trying to get my nails done because they're falling apart right now, then also I want to see the new Marvel movie. The schedule hasn't allowed me yet to see it, so yeah (smiling).

Q. Your father told me last week he's trying to make the match is not the end result, just something along the way. What has that journey been like for you to get that mindset? Generally wins and losses are quite distinct things.

COCO GAUFF: Honestly it's a work in progress. I feel like even now, I can't say in the past, even now I get wrapped up in results. I try to remember that we're pretty much playing a tournament every week; you can't win them all.

I think I just have to understand that even if the match didn't go my way, try to take the good things and positive things out of each match.

Q. Do you still have relations with Barilla and Tony Godsick is following you? I remember you went to Parma to try some pasta or whatever.

COCO GAUFF: Yeah, the relationship with Barilla has been great. I did Parma last year. I think it was a temporary tournament. They don't have it this year. If they did, I definitely would have played.

Last year, I won the tournament. They threw kind of a pasta party for me and Caty. I got to learn how to make carbonara, which I kind of forgot how to do.

The food, I remember they had, Barilla, one of the head chefs, doing the pasta for the tournament. I still to this day haven't tasted any better pasta.

Q. When you are at home, do you eat pasta or Italian food?


Q. Apart from pasta, which are your favorite foods coming from Italy?

COCO GAUFF: Yeah, before every match I do eat pasta because I try to get something with a lot of carbs and protein. Also I would say in Italy, I love gelato and tiramisu. Those are my favorites desserts before I came here. I think my first time I came here, I don't remember, but back in the States, those were my favorite things to eat. When I came here, Wow, it's a different story. We can't make it like the Italians do (smiling).

Q. What about fashion? When Serena Williams was coming here, she was going to Ferragamo, Gucci. She was trying all of them. If you have to pick some of them, make your rankings?

COCO GAUFF: I would say my favorite designer brand is Louis Vuitton. I like big brands, but I hate spending money. It's a once-in-a-while thing. If I do well in a tournament, I say, Okay, I'm going to buy myself something nice.

I like to buy things for other people, my mom, my family. I like to spoil them a little bit. For myself, when I like it, I look at the price, Am I really going to wear this the amount of times worth this amount of money? Most of the times the answer is no. I do have a couple of things in my closest that were a lot of money, but I'm glad that I bought it.

Q. Ons Jabeur last week told us your brother is a fan of hers.


Q. What did you make of her run for the Madrid title? Did your brother message you about that?

COCO GAUFF: My brother did not message me about that because he rarely messages me ever. It's more so I'm messaging him.

Yeah, I think Ons Jabeur, I hope outside of me, is his favorite player. I have two brothers. The youngest is eight. I don't know who his favorite player is. The other is 14. He plays baseball, doesn't play tennis. He calls himself the Black Ons Jabeur.

He doesn't play tennis, but when he does, he always goes for dropshots. He calls it the 'snake ball'. When I played her a couple times, You got to watch out for that snake ball.

He loves watching Ons play.

Q. What did you make of her run?

COCO GAUFF: I was super happy for her obviously. I think anyone, you can ask any player, she's one of the locker room favorites. Super nice person. I always root for her when I am not playing her. She also played Jess, so I was like 50/50 in the match. I was hoping for a good match, and it was a good one.

Q. You'll play Maria Sakkari next. Can you reflect on that match last year, what it meant to you, making the semifinals here?

COCO GAUFF: Playing her last year definitely gave me a lot of confidence. That was definitely the match that I think kind of set up my confidence for the clay season. I lost to her before I think at US Open, and she was starting to do really well. She also made semis I think last year at the French. We both had a good clay season.

This match, regardless of the result, as long as I put up my best fight, I think I'm going to be happy. I'm super excited for the match because I feel like whenever I play her, there's always some good points. I'm going to be ready to run a lot because she hits some big balls, but I think it's going to be a good one.

Q. Do you think the high expectation about you have affected your road? Now I know you are only 18, but you have a lot of experience. Do you think you have reached the right maturity to handle them?

COCO GAUFF: Yeah, I would definitely say expectations definitely affected me a little bit. I mean, I feel like it's hard not to want to do well and meet everybody's expectations. But I always have to remind myself that I play for me and me only.

Yeah, I think maturity-wise, I feel like I still have a lot of maturing to do. I would say I made quite a bit of maturing since three years ago when I first started.

Yeah, 18, I don't think I'm going to be my most mature self. I think that's something I'm constantly working on. Hopefully maybe three years from now, I can say I'm mature. I don't know if I'm mature yet (smiling).

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