ASB Classic 2020: American wiz kid 'Coco' Gauff scolds dad for cussing during loss

Tennis dads are notoriously tough on their prodigy children, especially on the women's professional tour - but American teen 'Coco' Gauff had the last laugh on hers during an early exit from the ASB Classic on Thursday.

The 15-year-old sensation, ranked 67th in the world, is widely regarded as the future of women's tennis, but came unstuck in the Auckland winds, falling 7-5 2-6 3-6 to steady German Laura Siegemund in the second round.

But she was still able to see the funny side of a 2h 14m struggle that saw father Corey Gauff trying everything he could to spark his daughter during breaks in play.

"I was pretty sure he said a curse word and I told him not to curse," she told media afterwards. "I said he had to watch his mouth, because his New Year's resolution is to curse less and he can't do that on TV.

With a long career ahead of her, Gauff seems to understand the lessons she learns now are important - but not as key as retaining her love for the game and her relationship with her support team.

"That's why I play tennis - to have fun. The coaching break... [Siegemund] was taking a toilet break and I had only seen [her dad] a few games ago, so it wasn't so much for advice, but so I wasn't sitting out there, waiting for her to come back."

The exchange was comparatively civil compared to the messy family feud that ensued during the ATP Cup in Australia this week, when Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas injured his father/manager during a courtside trantrum and was roundly scolded by his mother from the stands. 

"It happened accidentally," Tsitipas explained afterwards. "I didn't mean to do it, and straight away forgot about it and moved on from there.

"I wasn't aiming to do that, so it went out of control unfortunately."

Gauff will take valuable lessons away from her first visit to New Zealand, as she prepares for the Australian Open later this month.

"The biggest part of my conversation with dad after the match... he said I didn't play like I played in practice. I didn't play the right way and if I was, it would have been fine."

Defeat robbed Gauff of an opportunity to meet idol Serena Williams for the first time on court in the ASB Classic quarter-finals. The youngster achieved her breakthrough win over older sister Venus Williams in the first round at Wimbledon last year.