The 15-year-old Cori Gauff, the youngest ever player to qualify for Wimbledon since it became professional, beat 39-year-old US star Venus Williams 6-4, 6-4 on Monday.
“I never thought this would happen. I’m literally living my dream right now. Not many people get to say that,” the teenager, who is also American, said after the match.
She paid tribute to Williams and her sister Serena, who she said inspired her to take up the sport. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for her, Gauff, who is ranked 313th, said, adding that “I was telling her that she was so inspiring. I always wanted to tell her that.”
Williams, who had won four of her seven Grand Slam titles before Gauff was even born in 2004, congratulated her at the net and encouraged her to keep going.
Meanwhile, in another first-day Wimbledon shocker, world number 2, Japan’s Naomi Osaka, was kicked out 7-6 6-2 by Kazakh rival Yulia Putintseva.
Dismal day for Germany
German sixth seed and fifth-ranked Alexander Zverev lost 4-6 6-3 6-2 7-5 to Czech Jiri Vesely. Defending men’s champion, Novak Djokovic, dispatched another German hopeful, Philip Kohlschreiber, in three straight sets of 6-3 7-5 6-3.