Coco Gauff, between Rafael Nadal and imposter syndrome

Cori Gauff admits that she sometimes struggles with the imposter Syndrome, which affects someone she feels doesn't deserve their personal success

by Lorenzo Ciotti
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Coco Gauff, between Rafael Nadal and imposter syndrome

Cori Gauff admits that she sometimes struggles with the imposter Syndrome, which affects someone she feels doesn't deserve their personal success. The young US tennis player, who turned 19 in March, has a respectable resume for a player her age.

She is a Grand Slam finalist, won three WTA titles, participated in the WTA Finals and reached fourth place in the world rankings. Still, Gauff suffers from Impostor Syndrome at times, which manifests itself when she feels anxious and unsuccessful on the inside while being objectively very successful on the outside.

She said: "When I go out on the court, I have a lot of self-confidence, but I think throughout my life, even when I was a junior and playing in tournaments, I was very anxious about how well I was playing, and when I went out on the court, I felt I really think I can win the game.

I think it's just about fighting these thoughts and realizing that I belong here. Impostor Syndrome is a serious thing, so I feel it sometimes, but it's something I'm working on to understand that I'm here for a reason, that my ranking is here for a reason and that I truly deserve it."

Coco Gauff wants to become like Rafael Nadal

Gauff, who is currently among the players with the best score on clay with her 73% of wins, has a resounding ambition.

That is to reach Rafael Nadal on clay-courts. One of the three titles in her career has in fact arrived on the clay of the Emilia-Romagna Open 2021, but she has achieved other noteworthy results such as the semifinal in Rome again in 2021 and the final at the Roland Garros in 2022.

For the American, these are still far from the frightening percentages of the Spanish champion, who settle on 91.3% in general on clay and 97.4% in the Parisian Grand Slam. Among her achievements, however, the American does not exclude the achievement of such a level on this surface.

Gauff in an interview with Tennis Channel's Prakash Amritraj: "I think I'm a little more dangerous on clay, especially because of my style of play. Obviously, 73%, it's not really like Rafa, how far is it? 90%? Or 90% at the French Open. But you know, I'll take my 70. I hope I can get there one day."

Rafael Nadal
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