Tennis-It would be cool to meet Queen Elizabeth, says Gauff

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French Open
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By Karolos Grohmann

PARIS (Reuters) - American teenager Coco Gauff could soon become tennis royalty if she beats world number one Iga Swiatek in Saturday's French Open final but the 18-year-old is eager to meet the real deal -- Britain's Queen Elizabeth.

Elizabeth on Thursday waved to cheering crowds massed outside Buckingham Palace as Britain kicked off four days of pomp, parties and parades to celebrate her record-breaking 70 years on the throne.

"I mean, yeah, who would say no to meeting the queen?," Gauff said after beating Italy's Martina Trevisan to reach the final.

"Oh my gosh. I'm not really informed on British traditions and everything. I don't think that would ever happen, but if I did have the opportunity to meet the queen, that would be pretty cool. She has been a queen for ever."

Elizabeth has been on the throne for longer than any of her predecessors, and is the third-longest reigning monarch ever of a sovereign state. Opinion polls show she remains hugely popular and respected among British people.

"So meeting somebody that's been in that platform for that long would definitely be a change of perspective in my head," said Gauff, preparing for her first Grand Slam final.

"Because, you know, growing up as a girl, you always want to be the princess, but meeting a real queen, that would be pretty cool."

(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Ed Osmond)

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