Kerber brushes aside Gauff to reach last eight

Filed on July 5, 2021
Angelique Kerber returns against Coco Gauff during their women's singles fourth round match on the seventh day of the 2021 Wimbledon Championships. — AFP

For Gauff, 17, it was defeat at the same stage she exited two years ago

Teenager Coco Gauff’s Wimbledon hopes were dashed by Germany’s former champion Angelique Kerber as she went down 6-4 6-4 in a Centre Court battle of the generations on Monday.

The 33-year-old Kerber showed all of her vast experience to keep Gauff at bay as she reached her first Grand Slam quarter-final since winning the title here in 2018.

Gauff had not lost a set in matching her run to the fourth round on a startling debut in 2019, but the American was given a lessen in clinical efficiency by the left-hander.

While there were flashes of brilliance from the 20th seed, she could not sustain her level as the forehand that can be her Achilles heel broke down all to regularly.

“I have to say Coco is such a great talented player,” three-time Grand Slam champion Kerber said on court.

“She has such a great future in front of her. She will play here so many times and maybe one time she will get the title.”

A gusty wind made it difficult for both players early on as the first five games all went against serve.

But it was 25th seed Kerber who settled earlier, restoring order to move 4-2 ahead and she remained rock-solid with her accurate baseline game to take the opening set.

Kerber, who won her first title in three years last week in Bad Homburg, established an early break of serve in the second set as Gauff double-faulted and was uber-focused on her own service games as she edged towards victory.

Gauff tried to increase the aggression levels but Kerber showed great scrambling skills to maintain her lead and the German finished off her young opponent with just her second ace. She will next play Czech 19th seed Karolina Muchova on Tuesday.

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