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Italian Open: Serena Williams Fan Coco Gauff Makes Feelings Clear in Kendrick Lamar On-Going Rap Battle With Drake

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The clay courts of Rome are ready to rumble! The Italian Open gets underway, and young gun Coco Gauff is ready to make some noise. A self-proclaimed Serena Williams devotee, Gauff’s allegiance extends beyond the court. With the ongoing rap battle between Drake and Kendrick Lamar heating up, Gauff has thrown her hat in the ring, siding firmly with King Kendrick. Coco’s take on “the rap beef” surprisingly hinges on Serena Williams.

Gauff, while playing in Rome, continues to keep up with pop culture. On the Day Four of the Internazionali BNL D’Italia 2024, the World No. 3 defeated Magdalena Fręch 6-3, 6-3 in the second round match. However, the usual press conference took a detour for Coco Gauff. A question arose unrelated to her game: her opinion on the ongoing Drake and Kendrick Lamar feud.

Fresh off her Wednesday win at the Italian Open (May 8th), tennis star Naomi Osaka faced a surprising press conference question – the Drake vs. Kendrick Lamar rap battle. While claiming neutrality, the 26-year-old’s response hinted at a slight lean towards Kendrick. Coco, already aware of a similar question being asked as Osaka, said, “I knew you were going to ask me this because you asked Naomi (smiling)”, at first, echoing some of the sentiments Osaka expressed on Wednesday.

Later the 20-year-old made her pick saying, “To be honest, yeah, I like Kendrick’s songs more. Yeah, I think pretty much everybody I know is leaning towards him. I do like Drake as an artist, as well. But, yeah, as far as like the rap battle that’s going on, the rap beef, I think definitely Kendrick is winning.” But her pick wasn’t random. Gauff revealed the clear reason she sided with Kendrick over Drake.

Coco Gauff, a die-hard Serena Williams fan, couldn’t stay neutral after Drake’s past remarks about her idol. Gauff here is likely talking about the song; “Middle of the Ocean”, from 2022, which contains Drake’s “groupie” jab for Serena’s husband, Alexis Ohanian. On the flip side, in Kendrick Lamar’s May 4th diss track “Not Like Us,” he specifically warned Drake to “not speak on Serena.” Seeming annoyed by such a move, Coco said, “Drake, like, dissed Serena so I have to go with Kendrick. Impressed Serena Williams’ fan reemphasized her choice, stating, “Kendrick defended her. So, yeah, I have to go with him.”

Drake dropped ‘Push-Ups’, in response to ‘Like That’ targeting many rap stars, particularly Lamar. He also released ‘Taylor Made’, mocking Lamar with AI voices of Tupac and Snoop. Lamar responded with ‘Euphoria’, then Drake countered with ‘Family Matters’. Lamar returned with ‘Meet the Grahams’ and ‘6:16 in LA’, followed by Drake’s ‘The Heart Part 6’. The feud seems to have settled post Drake’s last track.

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