Brad Gilbert says he has come full circle after sharing an intriguing piece of news about his off-season work with reigning US Open champion Coco Gauff.

On the call for ESPN for Day 1 of the Australian Open Sunday, Gilbert was asked by host Chris McKendry about the special guest he brought in to take a look at his charge’s serve.

The person in question? One Andy Roddick, whom he helped guide to US Open glory 20 years before co-coaching Gauff to her own triumph at Flushing Meadows.

“I coached Andy at a young age. He’s got an amazing serve. And I was thinking, ‘what a great person to take a look at Coco’s serve,’” said Gilbert ahead of Novak Djokovic’s opener with 18-year-old Dino Prizmic.

He continued, “It’s kind of full circle. When I coached Andy, I was his age now. Andy was like Coco’s age. It was a great two days. Really helped things out, simplified Coco’s motion, abbreviated a little bit.”

Gauff leads the third quarter of the women's draw.

Gauff leads the third quarter of the women's draw.


Gauff was asked about the adjustments made to her motion during her pre-tournament press conference, and while Roddick’s name didn’t come up, the Delray Beach, Fla. resident stated she was “really open” to suggested changes on the whole.

“It only took me, like, two days—maybe three—to get really comfortable with it,” she said. “It was just to make the toss more consistent. Instead of throwing from so low to start up higher to make the toss more consistent.”

The No. 4 seed will play her first-round match Monday to open the day session on Rod Laver Arena against Anna Karolina Schmiedlova. The scheduling couldn’t be better, believes Gilbert.

“We played a lot on Laver, MCA, John Cain. And we’ve been practicing early, so it’s on the same timeframe as she has been,” he shared. “She likes the courts. We practiced a lot with these same balls in Florida for a month.

“She’s ready to go and had a great start to the season.”

It was a good change. —Coco Gauff


That start saw Gauff successfully retain a title for the first time in her career a week ago in Auckland. Competing at the ASB Classic, the top seed rallied past second seed Elina Svitolina to increase her win streak at the event to 10 matches.

“Other than the final in Auckland, I think I served really well. I hit probably the most aces I've hit consistently in matches or most unreturnables, I think I was at 80% or 90% first-serve points won,” she said. “It was a good change. Hopefully I can continue that serving throughout.”

Gauff has twice reached the round of 16 at Melbourne Park, including in 2023 when she was stopped by Jelena Ostapenko. The 19-year-old has swept both of her prior meetings with Schmiedlova in straight sets, including their fourth-round encounter at Roland Garros last June.