Gauff Misses Out On Italian Open Title With Routliffe Despite Spirited Final Effort

Gauff Misses Out On Italian Open Title With Routliffe Despite Spirited Final Effort

by Zachary Wimer

Coco Gauff didn't make the 2024 Italian Open final in the singles, but she made it in the doubles with Erin Routliffe, but they lost in the final.

Gauff has mostly played doubles with Jessica Pegula in recent years, but due to the experienced American's injury, the 20-year-old needed to find a new partner. She found one in Routliffe from New Zealand, and they played some really solid tennis this week in Rome.

The opening set of this final against Sara Errani and Jasmine Paolini was interesting because it didn't quite go how Gauff and Routliffe had probably hoped. The Italian combo were underdogs all week long, but they proved themselves to be a great doubles team, backed by the superb Rome crowd.

Even during the final, fans supported their players against the other duo. Paolini and Errani won the opening set 6-3 largely because their opponents didn't play as sharply as they could have.

They were broken in their first service game but failed to break their opponents despite having a few break points in the next game. They then got broken once more and, despite breaking, were broken once more, for the final score of 6-3 for the Italians.

It just wasn't sharp enough to play against the Italians, who looked determined and focused on getting it done. Gauff and Routliffe did begin the second set a bit better, breaking early for a 2-1 lead but then getting broken back immediately.

They've had plenty of problems keeping their serve this week but still managed to find ways to win. In the final, it was a bit different because they were facing a really determined doubles team that has built chemistry in the past.

The fact that the WTA 1000 event was played in Italy certainly allowed the Italians to get all the fan support on their side, and it mattered. It didn't prove decisive in the second set, because the American/New Zealand combo won the second set 6-4 and then jumped out to a big lead in the deciding super tie-break.

Despite being up 4-1, 5-3, 7-5, and 8-6, they lost due to an incredible late push by the Italians, who won the match 6-3, 4-6, 10-8 to claim the 2024 Italian Open title.


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