Gauff To Change Doubles Partner In Rome Following Pegula's Withdrawal

Gauff To Change Doubles Partner In Rome Following Pegula's Withdrawal

by Nurein Ahmed

Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula won't be reuniting in doubles anytime soon, as the older American is nursing an injury back home.

Pegula has withdrawn from the second WTA 1000 clay-court tournament, the Italian Open, scheduled to begin on May 7th. She has not disclosed the nature of her current injury, which also forced her to withdraw from Madrid.

The 30-year-old last played at the Billie Jean King Cup qualifiers, where she helped the USA ease past Belgium and reach the Finals in Seville. They have been paired to meet Slovakia in a first-round tie in November.

Pegula's absence from the tour has forced Gauff to search for a new doubles teammate. This raises serious questions about their long-term future as a doubles pairing.

While Gauff is still relatively young, she is very experienced and is looking to play a lot more doubles and win more big titles. Understandably, Pegula has mentioned that she doesn't have many years left and might be looking at cutting down doubles so she can focus on her singles career at this stage.

The World No. 5 hinted that they might dissolve their partnership after the Paris Olympics, although Pegula's injury struggles have come at possibly the worst time. They have only played together in two tournaments.

In Madrid, Gauff joined forces with compatriot Taylor Townsend, and the duo notched a pair of gutsy wins to reach the quarterfinal stage. There, they were eliminated by sixth seeds Barbora Krejcikova and Laura Siegemund.

The 20-year-old was expecting to team up with Pegula in Rome next week, but the Buffalo native won't make the trip to the Foro Italico. And now a new doubles pairing for Rome has been revealed. Gauff will play alongside Erin Routliffe.

The New Zealander was sitting at a career-high ranking of World No. 5 in doubles and captured her maiden Grand Slam doubles title with Gabriela Dabrowski at last year's US Open.


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