Ons Jabeur Indian Wells 2021

‘Ons Jabeur heading in the direction of number one,’ says Billie Jean King


Billie Jean King has long been an admirer of Ons Jabeur and believes the Tunisian can climb even higher in the WTA rankings.

The 27-year-old has enjoyed a remarkable 2021 campaign with a tour-leading 48 match wins already this year. More importantly for Jabeur however, she has become the first Arab player ever to reach the top 10.

Discussing Jabeur’s rise, King revealed she called the Tunisian on the morning of her 2020 French Open clash with Aryna Sabalenka, with Jabeur defeating the Belarusian to become the first Arab woman to reach the last 16 in Paris.

“I just knew I should call her,” King said. “I do call players, not just her, or we meet through people, and I just thought it was important.

“She has such a yearning to do well for the Arab people, and that came through really loud and really clear.

“She’s trying to represent the Arab people and I’m very big about what you do off the court, not just on the court. So I think I really admired that part of her.”

The American feels there is far more to come from the Tunisian star, who landed at number eight in the world rankings after an impressive run at Indian Wells.

“She can improve a lot, so I don’t think number eight is going to be her top ranking at all, I think she’s got the ability to go much higher,” King said.

“And I think as a child, or when she was younger and maybe still to this day, a few of the things I’ve read is her saying she’s always wanted to be number one. So she’s going in the right direction that’s for sure.”

Ons Jabeur Indian Wells 2021
Copy link