Jessica Pegula enjoyed a heartwarming reunion with tennis legend and former academy coach Stan Smith after scoring her first Wimbledon third-round appearance.

Fresh off back-to-back major quarterfinals at the Australian Open and Roland Garros, Pegula is in the midst of her best-ever run at the All England Club—rallying from a set down to defeat home favorite Harriet Dart—4-6, 6-3, 6-1, but still made time to catch up with her old Smith Stearns Academy coach.


The world No. 9 later shared a throwback picture with Smith, who presciently autographed, “Get ready for Wimbledon.”

A former No. 1-turned-fashion icon, Smith presided over Pegula’s tennis when she spent her formative years training in Hilton Head, South Carolina. Years of injuries and major surgeries long kept the big-hitting American from reaching her full potential, but Pegula has been a revelation in this post-pandemic landscape, reaching three major quarterfinals and her first WTA 1000 final at the Mutua Madrid Open.

Having made a long-awaited Top 10 debut earlier this spring, the No. 8-seeded Pegula will next face Petra Martic to reach a third consecutive Grand Slam second week.