Coco Gauff Claims World No. 1 Doubles Ranking After National Bank Open Title

by Luke Hanlon

(L-R) Coco Gauff and Jessica Pegula pose with the Champions Trophy following their women's doubles final win at the 2022 National Bank Open on Aug. 14, 2022 in Toronto.


Coco Gauff has made a habit of achieving success at a young age. 
Gauff broke onto the world stage as a 15-year-old at Wimbledon in 2019, making a run to the round of 16 before losing to No. 7 Simona Halep. 
Gauff, now 18, has been climbing up the world rankings in both singles and doubles ever since that magical run at Wimbledon. 
The Delray Beach, Florida, native reached new heights this weekend, as she earned the world No. 1 doubles ranking after she and fellow American Jessica Pegula won the doubles title at the National Bank Open in Toronto. 
This makes Gauff the second-youngest player to ever earn the Women’s Tennis Association No. 1 doubles ranking. Martina Hingis achieved the same ranking as a 17-year-old in 1998. 
“As a kid, I’m going to be honest with you, I didn't even know there was separate rankings for singles and doubles,” Gauff said in a post-match press conference. “But when I got on tour and when I realized I could do well in doubles, yes. ... I wanted to. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be No.1 in anything?”
The No. 3-ranked duo of Gauff and Pegula had to battle to win in Toronto against unranked Nicole Melichar-Martinez of the U.S. and Ellen Perez of Australia. The American duo fell down 3-0 right away but rallied to win six of the next seven games to take the opening set, 6-4. Melichar-Martinez and Perez pulled out the second set with a 7-5 tiebreak. The Americans responded with a 10-5 win in the match-tiebreak. 
“I’m so glad that I could help (Gauff) get there today,” Pegula, a 2020 Olympian who climbed four spots to earn the No. 8 WTA doubles ranking, said. “I think we’re No. 1 in the Race and the top two Americans in singles. So it’s been a pretty cool little journey that we’re on together, even though I'm ten years older.”
This is the second win of the WTA season for Gauff and Pegula, as the duo won the doubles title in Doha, Qatar, back in February. They also made the doubles final at the French Open, where they fell to Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic of France. That match came a day after Gauff lost to Iga Swiatek of Poland in the singles final.

Luke Hanlon is a sportswriter and editor based in Minneapolis. He is a freelance contributor to courtesy of Red Line Editorial, Inc.