Gauff, in a groove, breezes into ASB Classic final

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AUCKLAND, New Zealand — Top-seeded Coco Gauff advanced to the final of the ASB Classic by beating Danka Kovinic of Montenegro 6-0, 6-2 on Saturday.

The American hasn’t yet dropped a set at the Auckland hardcourt tournament and needed a little more than an hour to defeat seventh-seeded Kovinic to reach the fourth final of her career.

The 18-year-old Gauff conceded in a courtside interview she’s “in the groove” at the start of the year and just over a week ahead of the Australian Open after another impressive win.

“I guess (I’m in the groove),” Gauff said. “I’m in the final so it’s hard to say no to that question. It was really good on my behalf.”

Gauff was also pleased to compete in front of a crowd after a week in which persistent rain forced the majority of matches indoors without spectators.

“I’m glad I was able to play in front of you guys, finally,” she said. “It’s pretty much a sold-out house so thanks for supporting me.”

Gauff’s opponent in Sunday’s final will be either Ysaline Bonaventure or Rebeka Masarova, whose semifinal has been delayed by rain.

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