Gauff lost quickly after winning the WTA (Part 2)
In the evening of October 13 in Linz (Austria), Gauff set a record of becoming the youngest female tennis player to win the WTA title, since Nicole Vaidisova in 2004. Gauff is only 15 years and 214 days old, and the mark of young talents The United States has sparked a wave to demand that the World Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) relax rules.
The WTA states that a 15-year-old can only play 10 professional tournaments, and will increase from 12 to 16 tournaments in the next two seasons. This number may vary slightly with some special cases. With Coco Gauff, this player is allowed to attend up to four more professional tournaments before the age of 16, on March 13, 2020.
The above rules were first applied in the 1995 season after a series of struggles for the rights of young talents. At the forefront of the struggle at that time was Jennifer Capriati – the former world number one tennis player who won three Grand Slams.
By now, the WTA code of conduct is considered successful in preventing exhaustion and causing younger players to exceed the endurance limits. The three Grand Slam champions this year are all under the age of 24. That is, Naomi Osaka (22), Ashleigh Barty (23) and Bianca Andreescu (19).
Comparing these three names with young players who won the WTA title before the age of 16 shows the harshness and price that young players had to pay too expensive. Nicole Vaidisova won the Vancouver Open in 2004 at the age of 15 and retired at the age of 20. Legend of Martina Hingis also retired from the women’s singles career at the age of 22. At that time, the Swiss tennis player owned 40 WTA titles, of which there are five Grand Slams and each held number one in the world for a total of 209 weeks.
With innocence and humor, Gauff has breathed new life into professional tennis. The 15-year-old prodigy is also receiving many benefits from Team8 – Roger Federer’s experienced management company. “I advised the WTA to change and loosen the rules. I cannot forget the resounding achievements of Hingis when he was young,” the Swiss player told Wimbledon three months ago.
However, the Osaka and Gauff phenomena will not be able to change the WTA. Because those rules are like a brake, helping young talents find time and space to nurture and develop.