The last grand slam of the season has ended. The American Coco Gauff became the queen of New York, and Novak Djokovic became the king. Will Coco Gauff be the new Serena Williams? Has Novak Djokovic just sealed the title of the best tennis player of all time?
Coco Gauff and Novak Djokovic became the 2023 US Open singles champions. This is the first Grand Slam triumph for the 19-year-old American. For the 36-year-old Serb, this is a record 24th Grand Slam victory. Their winnings raise two questions. Will Coco Gauff be the new Serena Williams and did Novak Djokovic, by winning this year’s US Open, set a record for the number of slam wins that no one will ever be able to break? In our opinion, the answer is positive in both cases.
Coco Gauff, or rather Cori “Coco” Gauff, is a tennis player whose pace of development can be compared to the acceleration that Iga Swiatek’s career received after winning her first Roland Garros. Since 2021, Coco Gauff has reached the finals of four Grand Slam tournaments – US Open 2021 in doubles, Roland Garros 2022 in singles and doubles, US Open 2023 in singles. She has just won one of them – US Open 2023. Her progress and determination reminds us of the moment when Serena Williams began to dominate women’s tennis and showed that she could be better than her sister, Venus Williams. Although it is still too early to judge whether Gauff is the successor to the legendary Williams, it can certainly be said that she shows glimpses of her genius and fighting will. This was demonstrated in three matches at this year’s US Open. The duel with Mertens and the final with Sabalenka, where she was not afraid that her rivals easily beat her in the first set, but drew conclusions from her mistakes and won. Also a clash with the returning Caroline Wozniacki, where Gauff did not let herself be overwhelmed by the Wozniacki legend and returned to the game in the third set. We are convinced that we will hear about Coco Gauff many more times.
We are equally sure that Novak Djokovic did not say the last word. Although the Serb’s career is coming to an end and he mentions it more and more often, his game suggests that he would play for another 100 years. By winning the 2023 US Open, the Serb won his 24th Grand Slam title and equaled Margaret Court in the number of slam wins. Will the Serb win more trophies? He is already the absolute record holder in the number of slams won in the history of men’s tennis, overtaking the first record holder in this category, Rafael Nadal, by two titles. When in 2022, Rafael Nadal became the tennis player with the most Grand Slam tournament wins in history, winning his 22nd title, everyone thought that this number could not be beaten. Not only has Novak Djokovic beaten this feat by two titles, but his health is in much better condition than that of the injured Spaniard, so winning another title does not seem impossible. Therefore, it seems very likely that Novak Djokovic, instead of Rafael Nadal, will be able to enjoy his record for a long time (perhaps forever).