ROME -- World No.5 Coco Gauff advanced to the third round of Internazionali BNL d'Italia with the loss of just one game after defeating Yulia Putintseva 6-0, 6-1 on Thursday.
En route to her 59-minute victory, the 19-year-old American fired 29 winners while holding Putintseva to just one. While she served at just 44 percent first serves in, Gauff did not face a break point in the match. In contrast, Putintseva served at 72 percent first serves in, but was broken five times.
Gauff came into her match against Putintseva with a 2-0 lead in their head-to-head. The Kazakhstani endured a three-hour duel 24 hours earlier, defeating Viktorija Tomova, 6-7, 7-6, 6-0 in the first round. The fatigue from that effort was evident against Gauff, as Putintseva was a step off of her trademark defensive prowess. Gauff responded by overpowering her from the baseline.
"I usually have long matches with her," Gauff said. "I was fully prepared for that. But I told myself to play on my terms, not her terms.
"She's obviously a tricky player, has some big wins. Made the quarters of the French a couple times. I know clay is her surface. It's also kind of mine, too, so it was a good match today."
The American's performance was a strong recovery from her disappointing 6-3, 6-0 loss to Paula Badosa in the third round of Madrid. Before the tournament, Gauff admitted she needed some time to reset from the loss.
"It was a tough loss for me," Gauff said in Rome. "I think you could see that it just wasn't my day, my game, not how I like to appear on court. I've been working really hard since then. I'm feeling good. I'm practicing a lot better.
"With the coaching change, it's tough. I think I was dealing with making that adjustment. Especially during this part of the season, which is important to me, I felt a little bit of pressure. Now I feel like having that match, I feel like I'm just ready to build myself back up into what I know I can be."
Gauff will face 27th seed Marie Bouzkova next for a spot in the Round of 16. Bouzkova rallied from 4-0 down to Caty McNally to win 10 consecutive games before closing out a 6-4, 6-3 win.
"She played Jess [Pegula] last week," Gauff said. "Even though she lost, she had a good match against her. I am just going to be ready. I feel like it's going to be a dogfight, for sure."