Who is Coco Vandeweghe? American beats Garbine Muguruza of Spain
Vandeweghe is set to play former world number one Venus Williams in the semi-final after growing up watching her play tennis.
“It’s a dream to play someone you grew up watching," Vandeweghe said ahead of the semi-final on Thursday in Melbourne.
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"But to do it at this stage of a Grand Slam is kind of crazy. I mean, I can't really put it into words.”
The hard-hitting American tennis player was inspired by Venus and once even asked for her autograph when she was young.
A photo posted by CoCo Vandeweghe (@cocovandey) on Jan 24, 2017 at 12:03am PST
Vandeweghe said that she thinks it is “pretty cool” that she will go up against another American in the semi-final.
The brash sportswoman continued her impressive run today by defeating French Open champion Garbine Murguruza 6-4, 6-0 at the Australian Open.
It comes after tennis player pulled off the biggest upset of the tournament by beating world number one Angelique Kerber in style.
Vandeweghe has swaggered around the court at the Australian Open but admitted that she felt “nervous and scared” ahead of the match today.
But she said: “I think I don't shy away from a challenge necessarily. I never have. Growing up, I've always just been wanting to prove people wrong in a lot of different regards.”
Vandeweghe, from New York, credited her beauty queen grandmother’s advice for getting her success in tennis.
“My grandmother always said to me, ‘Fake it till you make it’,” she said. “Coming from a Miss America that basically oozed confidence, that’s a pretty good line.
“I had a divorced mother. I don’t really know my father at all. My grandparents helped raise me. That was really special for me.”
Her grandmother was crowned Miss America in 1952, while her grandfather played basketball for the New York Knicks and her mother was an Olympic swimmer.
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Vandeweghe said: “We grew up in a competitive household. Everything was competitive, from card games, racing to the car first to get to the front seat.
“My grandfather would throw something at me when I was doing my homework just to make sure I’m quick and ready, do different things like that.
“It was just fun, stupid things like that.”
Vandeweghe’s previous best Grand Slam tournament was making the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 2015.