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Coco Gauff Reflects on Australian Open Semifinal Loss, Says It's 'Time to Get Back to Work'

The 19-year-old lost to Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus — who she defeated to win the US Open — in straight sets, 7-6 (2), 6-4 on Thursday night

<p>Robert Prange/Getty</p>

Robert Prange/Getty

  • Coco Gauff lost to Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus in straight sets, 7-6 (2), 6-4 on Thursday night at the Australian Open

  • In a post on Instagram, the tennis star wrote that she was “reminding myself that i’m still evolving. time to get back to work and come back stronger"

  • Gauff told reporters after the match that she thought she played better than when she won the US Open

Coco Gauff is ready “to get back to work” after losing in the semifinal round of the Australian Open.

Gauff, 19, lost to Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus — who she defeated to win the US Open — in straight sets, 7-6 (2), 6-4 on Thursday night.

“Reminding myself that i’m still evolving. time to get back to work and come back stronger. thank you @australianopen for the memories this year and thank you everyone for their support💙💛🤍” the tennis star wrote on Instagram, along with a carousel of images from the tournament, shortly after the loss.

Gauff shared similar sentiments in a press conference following the match.

"I had chances in both sets, but she played better tonight," Gauff said. "I felt like I did my best with the game plan that I had. I think it just came down to a couple of points."

She added, comparing the match to her win in New York: “You know, US Open I felt like wasn’t a great match for me. Yes, I won. I think I played better tonight.”

Related: Coco Gauff Believes She Put ‘Too Much Pressure’ on Herself Winning: ‘I Realized Losing Isn’t All That Bad’

Earlier this month, the tennis phenom offered insight about her competitive mindset on the eve of the Grand Slam.

“I think I put too much pressure on winning a Slam. I think I was feeling like I have to do it,” Gauff said. “When I went on the scene at 15, I felt like I had to win a Slam as a teenager because that’s what everybody thought.”

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Yet when she lost in the first round in Wimbledon last year, the experience helped her gain perspective.

Related: Coco Gauff Takes the Plunge Off New Zealand’s Tallest Building: 'Jumping into the New Year'

“The world didn’t end," she said. “The sun still shines. I still have my friends and family.”

She went on to note, “I realized that losing isn’t all that bad, and that I should just focus on the battle and the process and enjoy it. I found myself being able to play freer and trust myself more.”

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