"Coco Gauff, what you said when you won the US Open stuck with me" - WNBA star Breanna Steward echoes fellow American in MVP acceptance speech
New York Liberty star Breanna Steward drew inspiration from Coco Gauff while delivering her acceptance speech for the 2023 WNBA MVP award.
In one of the closest MVP races in WNBA history, Steward secured the second MVP title of her career with 446 points, narrowly edging out Connecticut Sun forward Alyssa Thomas (429 points) and Las Vegas Aces forward A'ja Wilson (433 points).
In her acceptance speech, Breanna Steward shared how Coco Gauff's words from her victory speech at the 2023 US Open title had left a lasting impact on her. She then proceeded to quote a segment from the 19-year's old speech.
"Coco, what you said when you won the US Open stuck with me," Steward said.
After winning her maiden Grand Slam title at the New York Major, Gauff stated that she strived to handle her success with grace. She also expressed her gratitude towards her doubters for fueling her determination to win and pushing her over the line even though it wasn't their intention to do so.
"I tried my best to carry this with grace and I've been doing my best. So honestly to those who thought were putting water in my fire, you're really added gas to it. And now I'm burning so bright," Steward quoted Coco Gauff's speech.
Steward echoed Gauff's sentiments, highlighting her desire to carry herself with grace and serve as a positive role model for her 2-year-old daughter, Ruby, whom she shares with her wife, Marta Xargay.
"I do my best to carry myself with grace and be a great teammate and I want to be an example to Ruby about what it means to approach life with the humility and grit necessary to lead teams, to help others be great and to win at things that matter the most," she said.
"I was so happy to see Coco Gauff win" - Maria Sharapova on American's US Open triumph
Coco Gauff won her maiden Grand Slam title at the 2023 US Open after securing a comeback victory over Aryna Sabalenka, winning 2-6, 6-3, 6-3.
Maria Sharapova, who was in attendance for the title clash, recently shared her thoughts on the 19-year-old's triumph. While she asserted that the final wasn't of the highest quality due to the nerves on both sides, she expressed delight at the American's victory.
"Yes, yes, I couldn’t miss that, I just felt like it was a match that would.. seeing Coco on that stage and all the expectations from the beginning of the tournament umm.. I didn’t think it was the highest quality of match because there were so much nerves on I think on both sides umm.. I was so happy to see Coco win," Sharapova said on the latest episode of the Rennae Stubbs Tennis Podcast.
In other news, Coco Gauff has arrived in Beijing for the 2023 China Open, marking her first tournament as the reigning US Open champion. The American took to social media and shared a glimpse into her practice session ahead of the WTA 1000 event.