WATCH: Ons Jabeur wins exquisite battle of the ‘BBQ buddies’ to continue living Wimbledon ‘dream’
Ons Jabeur has become the first Arab player, man or woman, to reach a Slam singles final after overcoming good friend Tatjana Maria in a sumptuous spectacle on Wimbledon Centre Court Thursday.
The world number two required three sets to oust her German opponent, but came through 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 in the bright British sunshine.
The slice and craft from Jabeur and Maria had the Wimbledon crowd enthralled from the first ball to the last as the pair danced around each other with their delicate and considered strokes.
On return, Maria was the far more clinical of the two, the 34-year-old clinching requiring just one break opportunity to gain the upper hand in the set she eventually won.
But the world number 103 bled too many opportunities for Jabeur to break her, the Tunisian taking four if the 11 presented to her.
“It’s a dream coming true from years and years of work and sacrifice,” she said in her post-match interview.
Maria and Jabeur shared a lengthy hug at the net after the contest as they just soaked in the occasion.
Jabeur added: “[Maria] is such an inspiration for so many players, including me.
“I wanted to share that moment with her.”
🗣️ “This is almost impossible to hit. Wow.” 🤯
Have you ever seen a more styled-out shot?? 🔥#BBCTennis #Wimbledon pic.twitter.com/8C9acpv32S
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) July 7, 2022
With Jabeur the highest ranked player in the women’s draw after world number one Iga Swiatek crashed out in the third round, the 27-year-old has truly stepped up to the plate.
She awaits the victor of Simona Halep and Elena Rybakina in the Wimbledon women’s final on Saturday.
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