Skyrocketing teenagers Coco Gauff and Catherine McNally booked a spot in the first WTA final for each of them, as they knocked off No.3 seeds Anna Kalinskaya and Miyu Kato to reach the Citi Open doubles final.
WTA Staff
August 3, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C., USA -- More for you, Team McCoco.

American teenage sensations Coco Gauff and Catherine McNally claimed a spot in the Citi Open doubles final on Friday, after a straightforward 6-1, 6-2 victory over No. 3 seeds Anna Kalinskaya of Russia and Miyu Kato of Japan.

"We're super excited to be in the final," said McNally, in their post-match press conference. "This is only our second event together, and it just shows that we play really well together, and that our games mesh together really well. For me, it's just a huge week, because I got my first main draw win in singles and doubles, and now I'm in the semis of singles and the final of doubles."

Gauff concurred, saying that "it's been a good week for both of us," and she then complimented her partner, who defeated Hsieh Su-wei to reach the singles semifinals. "I'm especially proud of you, so good luck tomorrow!"

"I think that we play well on the court, and I hope that we win tomorrow, and that she can win as well," Gauff added.

Gauff, 15, and McNally, 17, are playing their first professional tournament together, having won the US Open junior doubles title as a tandem last year. The pairing continues to be a marvelous match at all levels, as they dispatched Kalinskaya and Kato after just 49 minutes of play.

The duo announced that they will keep their run rolling: "We're going to play at the US Open together," McNally stated.

In Friday's semifinals, the duo cruised through the first set before falling behind 0-2 in the second set after a loss of serve by Gauff. However, that was a minor blip in their run, as the Americans rebounded with stunning, aggressive work to reel off six straight games and claim their spot in Saturday's final.

"Coco has a big game, huge serve, big groundstrokes from the baseline, so I think that helps me at the net," said McNally. "I'm able to poach, that's where I like to be. I think we just get along really well -- not just our games, but off the court. I think that helps too because we bring a lot of energy -- if one person's down, we pump the other one up."

"I really enjoy playing with Caty," Gauff said. "I feel like she really knows doubles. I learned a lot from her on the court. I remember the first tournament we played together, the US Open juniors, and I learned so much at doubles in that one week than I could have in my whole life. So, thanks, Caty!" Gauff laughed.

It is a stellar stretch of form by the teenagers, who have known each other for quite some time, according to McNally.

"It was in Orlando, and we played a tiebreaker against each other on the hardcourts -- this was maybe like three or four years ago," McNally mused. "That's the first time I remember meeting you fully."

"Honestly, I have such a bad memory," Gauff laughed. "So I think that she's probably right!" The two agreed that McNally probably won that tiebreak.

The two Americans now only have one point of time on their minds: Saturday's final, where they will face the No.4-seeded team of Maria Sanchez of the United States and Hungary's Fanny Stollar. Sanchez and Stollar defeated Chinese No.2 seeds Wang Yafan and Yang Zhaoxuan, 6-3, 6-3, in the earlier semifinal.

"For me, personally, I don't really put expectations on us, or myself in general, because I just feel like, whatever happens," said Gauff. "Obviously, me and her know that we have the game to win."

"We didn't go into the tournament seeing how far we could go -- we went into the tournament with getting to the finals in our mind," Gauff continued. "Hopefully we get out there and do well, but I don't think there's any expectations for us."