Coco Gauff backed as US Open contender but there is one catch

Coco Gauff in action
Coco Gauff hits a forehand

Coco Gauff has been backed as a strong contender for US Open title glory but with a key qualifier.

Former coach of Serena Williams, Rick Macci has identified what Gauff needs to do to be a genuine contender.

Gauff has previously admitted that her forehand side is a great weakness to her game but she has done a lot of work on it.

Despite recent progress, Macci feels she still needs work in that area but could be a dangerous player if she builds confidence on her forehand.

“Coco Gauff at age 19 has supersonic make up speed, a wicked slice serve, a laser down line backhand with juice nice soft crispy volleys, a feathery drop shot and most of all a quickly maturing mind and if she can stay authoritative on the forehand she has enough to win the US OPEN,” Macci wrote on social media.

Gauff has still been making progress in her game despite players looking top expose her forehand which has actually made it harder for her to address the issue.

“A lot of people don’t realize it’s not easy to fix things while you’re playing,” Gauff told reporters ahead of the Canadian Open.

“I didn’t want to take time off from playing. I still felt like I had a shot in the Slams. I mean, I made a Slam final last year.”

Gauff felt that the tide turned during her run to the title in Washington a few weeks back.

“Everybody is trying to play the forehand,” Gauff said after winning Washington D.C. “Like, I’m not going to sit here and act like it’s some secret.

“I think that consistently this week I have beaten that scouting report, and I think that’s why the players tend to get a little more frustrated. Almost all week every player that I played has been looking at their box, because I truly think that the plan that they had I was able to kind of combat that.”

Gauff was knocked out in the last eight in Montreal this week but that loss came in a closely fought contest against American No 1 and her doubles partner Jessica Pegula.

“There’s still room for a lot of improvement,” Gauff said. “But within the three-week span, it’s been since my first-round loss [at Wimbledon] to now, I feel like it’s improved so much where I don’t feel like it’s a liability.

“It’s becoming a weapon,” she said of her forehand.

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