Day 1 of Wimbledon was ROUGH. Last year, the first few days of Wimbledon were rough for the top seeds on the women’s side too – I think by the third round, all top-ten women players had lost. It was awful. This year, there’s at least more parity with top players and former champions going out in the first round. On the men’s side, these are the players who lost on the FIRST DAY: Alexander Zverev (#6), Stefanos Tsitsipas (7), Gael Monfils (16) and Dusan Lajovic (32), not to mention poor Grigor Dimitrov. On the women’s side, there was another bloodbath: the second-seed Naomi Osaka lost in her opening round ON CENTER COURT and afterwards, she couldn’t even get through her press conference because she was about to cry.
But the big topic of Wimbledon conversation on Day 1 was Venus Williams. Venus is a five-time Wimbledon singles champion. She’s also won the Wimbledon doubles title six times. Venus loves Wimbledon. Grass is her best surface. She was just a finalist there back in 2017. Venus is 39 years old and she played her opening round match against a 15-year-old American girl named Cori “Coco” Gauff. Coco idolizes Venus and Serena. Coco has always wanted to play one of them or both of them. And on Monday, that 15-year-old child beat Venus Williams.
I watched the match on ESPN while I was at the gym, and I was so nervous at ESPN’s dedicated coverage of it, like they were hyping the f–k out of it in the early minutes. I thought Venus was playing… okay. Not great. Venus didn’t want to run down every ball and Venus made a lot of unforced errors. It was rough. I know it’s the birth of a new star with Coco and seriously, good for her. But I’m still gutted for Venus. She was gutted for herself too. She did say that she plans to play next year so….
Q. How far do you think you can go in this tournament?
CORI GAUFF: My goal is to win it.#Wimbledon
— Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) July 1, 2019
Photos courtesy of Getty.