15 May 2024

Kiwi paired with Coco Gauff at Italian Open

11:15 am on 15 May 2024
New Zealand tennis player Erin Routliffe.

New Zealand tennis player Erin Routliffe. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Kiwi tennis player Erin Routliffe says she is battling impostor syndrome after being teamed up with world number three Coco Gauff at the Italian Open Doubles.

Injury to both players' regular partners has thrust the unlikely pair together and they have quickly found success, progressing to the quarterfinals in Rome.

Gauff will also contest the singles crown against to seed Iga Świątek on Saturday.

With Canadian Gaby Dabrowski ruled out, Gauff and Routliffe joined forces to pick up wins over Mirra Andreeva and Vera Zvonareva and Chinese duo Wang Xiyu and Yue Yuan in the round of 32.

Routliffe told TVNZ she has noticed more attention being paid to her games.

"Every court we play on is pretty full. I'm sitting there warming up with someone who is ranked top five in the world and a grand slam champion. Going to play our match is a bit surreal but at the same time I have to back myself and not have too much impostor syndrome," said Routliffe.

She believes she matches up well with the US Open champion, despite having no personal relationship prior to Rome.

"Each match we play better together but it's definitely a dream and there are a couple moments where I'm like 'wow, this is really my life'."

The pair will play against Russian Kateřina Siniaková and American Taylor Townsend at midnight tonight NZT.