Jessica Pegula has been having a remarkable season, as she finished within the top eight ranked tennis players to secure a berth for herself at the WTA Finals in Cancun. Though she didn’t have any major Grand Slams to her name, her consistency saw her remain a constant among top-ranked professionals.
Jessica along with Coco Gauff has been touted to be the flag bearers of American women’s tennis following the retirement of Serena Williams. Giving her take on the state of women’s tennis in America, Jessica declared Serena as “the GOAT” and Coco Gauff as “the present and the future” of women’s tennis in America.
Pegula who is the world no. 5, was the highest-ranked female player from America for some time, before Coco took over the reins, following her title-clinching run at the US Open. On whether she sees Gauff as a competition for her to be “the next American star”, she replied, “No I don’t because I’m 10 years older…” But, she felt happy to represent American tennis.
Jessica Pegula was asked if there’s a battle with Coco Gauff to be the next American star
“How do you see the present & future of American women’s tennis? Because you & Coco are here. Serena retired not long ago. Do you feel kind of pressure to be the new American star? Or how… pic.twitter.com/FkvoX6XyRv
— The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) November 3, 2023
Jessica added, “I’m definitely not going to be playing as long as she’s going to be playing…” Stating that, as Coco had already won a Grand Slam, Jessica didn’t think as though there was competition there. She further stated, “But I think Coco is the present and the future...” Pegula felt that as long as Gauff is healthy and competitive she would be a force to reckon with in years to come.
Regarding comparisons with Serena, Jessica felt, “Again, comparing to Serena’s a big feat. I don’t think anyone is like Serena. I think Serena’s her own person. I think she’s the GOAT, or whatever you want to say…” She added that it’s nearly impossible to fill those shoes of her.
Jessica Pegula dreams of representing America at the Olympics with Coco Gauff
Jessica Pegula has already set her sights on representing her country in the next Olympic Games and she has a dream doubles partner in her mind. The 29-year-old would like to team up with compatriot and teenage sensation Coco Gauff to represent their country at the Olympics.
Coco Gauff thought she won her doubles match with Jessica Pegula when she won a game at 4-1 😂
It happens to the best of us. ❤️
— The Tennis Letter (@TheTennisLetter) August 30, 2023
The duo is the world’s no. 1 doubles team and has won five titles to go with their appearance at the finals of the 2022 French Open. With 2024 being an Olympic year, the current world no. 5 stated, “We definitely want to play Olympics next year.” But, fans may not get to watch more of the Pegula-Gauff pair after the Paris Olympics as both of them would like to concentrate on singles.
Jessica said, “I played like 120 matches like combined with everything. And so yeah next year, I think Coco Gauff and I will probably play less doubles we want to try and focus on singles.” Gauff, too, before going on to win the US Open emphasized her wish to go for an Olympic gold at Paris 2024 before she cut down on the time spent on doubles.
Coco opined, “I do see myself playing in the Slams the majority of the time in doubles.” But, she was quick to add that though not in every Slam, maybe the US Open which she thought was the Grand Slam she would like to play as much as she can.
The pair is currently competing at the WTA Finals in Cancun, where they still have a slim chance of making it to the semifinals. In the singles event, Jessica got the better of Coco in straight sets, 6-2, 6-1, to qualify for the finals of the season finale.