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Roland Garros 2023: Coco Gauff returns to QFs, faces rematch vs. Iga Swiatek

Arthur Kapetanakis | June 05, 2023

For the third straight year at Roland Garros, Coco Gauff has advanced to the quarterfinals. With a 7-5, 6-2 win against Slovakia's Anna Karolina Schmiedlova on Monday, the American is through to her fourth career Grand Slam quarterfinal, with her other trip to that stage coming at last year's US Open.


Next up for Gauff is a Wednesday showdown with world No. 1 and defending champion Iga Swiatek, a rematch of last year's Paris final, won by the Pole.

Against Schmiedlova, Gauff won a tight opening set after surrendering a 5-2 lead, then ran away with the second by claiming the final five games of the match from 1-2. In windy conditions on Court Philippe-Chatrier, she was broken just twice and dominated on first serve, winning 75% of points behind her first delivery.


The victory set up the possibility of a quarterfinal meeting with two-time Roland Garros champ Swiatek, and that matchup was quickly confirmed when the Pole moved past Lesia Tsurenko via retirement after building a 5-1 lead. Gauff has yet to take a set off Swiatek in six previous meetings, with four of those matchups coming in 2022 and the most recent earlier this season in the Dubai semis.


"Honestly, since last year I have been wanting to play her, especially at this tournament," Gauff said in press, before the matchup was confirmed. "I figured that it was going to happen, because I figured I was going to do well and she was going to do well. Didn't know what side of the draw we were going to be on obviously.

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images.

"But I'm the type of mentality if you want to be the best you have to beat the best. I think also if you want to improve, you have to play the best. I feel like the way my career has gone so far, if I see a level, and if I'm not quite there at that level, I know I have to improve and I feel like you don't really know what you have to improve on until you see that level."


Even though Swiatek had not yet advanced when Gauff was speaking to the media, the American said she expected to see the Pole in the next round and that she was up for the challenge.

Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images.

"I think it would be almost cowardly to say that I want to not face the noise and not face the challenge, but I think that I'm up for it," added the American, who is also though to the women's doubles quarters with Jessica Pegula. "I have improved a lot since last year, and she has too.


"I think it would be a great battle for us and for the fans too. I'm sure they would appreciate that matchup, as well."


Gauff said she will rewatch some of her previous matches against Swiatek to prepare for Wednesday's matchup. But her main takeaway from last year's defeat will be motivation.


"It's more so I don't want to make the final my biggest accomplishment," she said. "I want to keep moving forward and keep reaching further heights."


For more from Roland Garros, visit the tournament's official website. The main draw runs from May 28 through June 11.

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