Crown thy good


Coco Gauff won the women's singles tennis championship at the U.S. Open in New York today. At 19 years old, she's the first American to win it all at that event since 2017. 

The final match was a microcosm of Gauff's summer. It started out shaky, with a first-set loss, but she turned the corner in the second set, and prevailed in three. She was fully in control in the third.

Her worthy opponent, the shrieking Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus, had Gauff running all over the court the whole afternoon. But that's the thing about Coco, she can run. Some of her return shots were beyond belief.

I tuned in just in time to see "America the Beautiful" sung before the first game by jazz diva C├ęcile McLorin Salvant. Speaking of being totally in control.

I am so happy for Coco, who's carried a lot of baggage since breaking onto the professional scene at the tender age of 15.  These days she's relaxed and wise beyond her years. Her psychology is starting to match her athleticism. In which case, look out, world.

Tomorrow the Serbian executioner Novak Djokovic, who demolished America's Ben Shelton as expected, plays for the men's title against Daniil Medvedev, who, playing out of his mind, upset Carlos Alcaraz yesterday. Before the match, Medvedev, a Russian, had said he needed to turn it up to 11, and afterward he rightly observed that he had in fact turned it up to 12. He may need a 13 tomorrow.

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