Top 10 youngest WTA Tour title winners: Where does Coco Gauff rank?
Coco Gauff became the first 15-year-old in 15 years to win a WTA Tour title when she lifted the Upper Austria Ladies Linz trophy over the weekend, but where does she rank in the top 10 youngest WTA Tour title winners?
The teenager, who first made the world sit up and take note when she reached the fourth round at Wimbledon earlier this year, beat former Roland Garros champion Jelena Ostapenko to win her maiden singles trophy.
She is not youngest player to win a WTA Tour title, but check out the top 10 to see where she enters the list.
10. Anke Huber – 15 years, 8 months and 22 days
Having made her WTA Tour debut while she was still in high school, Huber justified her reputation as she reached the third round of the Australian Open in 1990.
And in August that year she won her maiden title when she beat American Marianne Werdel Witmeyer 6–1, 5–7, 6–4 in the OTB Open final in Schenectady, New York.
9. Coco Gauff – 15 years, 7 months
American Gauff enters the list at No 9 after she beat Ostepanko 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 in Austria. What makes her victory in Linz even more special is the fact that she only made it into the main draw as a lucky loser as she lost in the second round of qualifying.
The 15-year-old defeats Jelena Ostapenko 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 to claim her first WTA title! pic.twitter.com/i8ArqH6RnG
— WTA (@WTA) October 13, 2019
And the fairytale run included a victory over top seed and world No 8 Kiki Bertens.
8. Gabriela Sabatini – 15 years, 5 months and 2 days
She had already made it clear that she was a world beater at the 1985 French Open as she reached the semi-final just a few weeks after her 15th birthday.
And in October that year she got the first of her 27 top-level titles when she defeated American Linda Gates 6–3, 6–4 in the Japan Open final.
7. Monica Seles – 15 years, 4 months and 29 days
Having turned professional in February 1989, Seles didn’t have to wait too long to taste success at the highest level as three months later she won the Virginia Slims of Houston in Texas, beating Chris Evert 3–6, 6–1, 6–4.
The following year Seles would win the first of her nine Grand Slam titles at the age of 16 years and 189 days as she won Roland Garros, but that record was bettered by Martina Hingis in 1997.
6. Nicole Vaidisova – 15 years, 3 months and 23 days
Appearing in only her third WTA Tour main draw event, qualifier Vadisova became the sixth-youngest player to win a singles title when she lifted the Vancouver Open trophy in August 2004, beating Laura Granville 2–6, 6–4, 6–2.
And two months later the Czech won another title as a 15-year-old when she won in Tashkent.
5. Mirjana Lucic-Baroni – 15 years, 1 month and 25 days
The Croatian turned professional on April 26 1997 and one week later she entered her first-ever professional event, the Croatian Open.
By the end of the tournament she had a first WTA Tour title after defeating American Corina Morariu 7–5, 6–7, 7–6. She successfully defended her title the following year.
Interesting fact, Lucic-Baroni is also the youngest player to win a title at the Australian Open as she was 15 years, 10 months and 21 days when she teamed up with Martina Hingis to win the women’s doubles in 1998.
4. Andrea Jaeger – 14 years, 7 months and 14 days
Just months after winning the coveted Orange Bowl in 1979, the American teenager carried that form over to the Avon Futures tournament in Las Vegas in January 1980, beating Barbara Potter 7–6, 4–6, 6–1.
3. Jennifer Capriati – 14 years, 6 months and 29 days
Teenage prodigy Capriati made her professional debut at the age of 13 years and 11 months in 1990 and finished runner-up in her first two tournaments.
She made her title breakthrough at the third time of asking as she won the Puerto Rico Open in October 1990, beating Zina Garrison 5–7, 6–4, 6–2.
2. Kathy Rinaldi – 14 years, 6 months and 24 days
Rinaldi edges fellow American Capriati by the slimmest of margins as she was only five days younger when she won her maiden title at the Borden Classic in Kyoto in October 1981, beating Julie Harrington 6–1, 7–5.
Earlier in 1981, Rinaldi became the youngest player to win a match at Wimbledon as she was 14 years and 91 days when she beat Susan Rollinson in the first round at SW19.
1. Tracy Austin – 14 years, 0 months and 28 days
Tracy Austin and the word records go hand-in-hand and this particular milestone is likely to stand the test of time.
Austin turned pro in October 1978, but by then she had already appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated and already had her first title in the bag as she won the Portland trophy in January 1977, beating Stacy Margolin 6–7, 6–3, 4–1 in the final.
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