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Serena Williams: Coco Gauff vs. Naomi Osaka Features 'Future of Women's Tennis'

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorAugust 30, 2019

Coco Gauff, of the United States, celebrates after defeating Timea Babos, of Hungary, during the second round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York, Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Charles Krupa/Associated Press

Serena Williams may be looking for her record 24th major at the U.S. Open, but she's ready to be a fan when No. 1 Naomi Osaka and Coco Gauff face off in the tournament's most anticipated matchup thus far.

"I think it's super exciting tennis," Williams said per Adam Zagoria of Forbes. "Coco is obviously much, much younger than Naomi, if you could say that, because Naomi is incredibly young. But it's shocking to say that Coco is about six years younger.

"I definitely think it's the future of women's tennis. And I'm really excited to just be a fangirl and kind of watch."

It's hard to argue that the two may carry the sport's mantle for the foreseeable future.

The 21-year-old Osaka is already a two-time major winner, having taken the 2018 U.S. Open—after beating Williams in the final—and 2019 Australian Open.

Gauff is already making major headlines at 15 years old, reaching the fourth round of Wimbledon this year before winning a couple of three-set matches at the U.S. Open to earn a third-round berth.

Younger players have impressed in the U.S. Open women's draw despite the tournament not even reaching the fourth round yet.

In addition to Osaka and Gauff, 17-year-old Caty McNally pushed Serena Williams to three sets, and 23-year-old Taylor Townsend upset No. 4 Simona Halep in a three-set classic that ended in a tiebreaker.

Gauff and Osaka will face off on Saturday at 7 p.m. ET at Arthur Ashe Stadium.