Legends in the making: Cori Gauff, Traigh Pathon and other rising sports stars 15 and younger

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I wasnt surprised that I won. My dad told me that I could do this when I was eight.
I wasnt surprised that I won. My dad told me that I could do this when I was eight.

Defeating your idol is one way of making a great first impression, and at just 15, Cori 'Coco' Gauff has taken it one step further.

The rising sports star beat seasoned Grand Slam champ, and her own hero, Venus Williams, in a qualifying round of the 2019 Wimbledon Championships, and is now the youngest tennis player to make it through to the second round of the tournament. 

"My parents will be super happy, my dad was jumping up every time I won a point. I'm so happy they spent all their time on me and my brothers and making sure we're successful," she said at a post-match conference

The grand slam newbie is being hailed as a "champion in the making," and is now setting her sights on clinching her first Grand Slam title

"I wasn't surprised that I won. My dad told me that I could do this when I was eight. My goal is to win it [Wimbledon]." 

Commenting on her post-victory talk with Venus, Cori said: 

"I just told her I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for her, she's so inspiring." 


Also see: International sports career beckoning? These are the subjects to take at school

Is your child a sporting champ? Share your story with us, and we could publish your email. 


Local champs 

We're sure Cori has just become an inspiration to a whole new generation of aspiring athletes. Here are a few local sporting stars under 15 making waves in their own right. 

Golfing prodigy Traigh Pathon

Traigh Pathon

He's only 8-years-old but Traigh's talent has already seen him travelling the world and taking names. 

He was only 4 when he started competing and has since participated and placed in the Junior Africa Challenge, the Kids Golf World Championship, and the U.S. Kids Golf European Championship. 

See why he's been dubbed the Cape Town's very own Tiger Woods

Judah, Caleb, Aarti and Archana: Chess champs 

Judah and Caleb Levitan

8-year-old twins, Judah and Caleb Levitan, and siblings Aarti (12) and Archana (9), made news last year when they participated and in the Africa Youth Chess Championships.  The twins secured joint first place in their age group (under 8) and sisters Aarti and Archana placed first and second (respectively) in the under 12 girls category. 

Both sets of siblings have held national colours and have represented the country internationally. 

Chat back:

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