Wimbledon finalist Ons Jabeur awarded national honour
Ons Jabeur has received the Tunisian Order of Merit on her return home following her run to the Wimbledon final last week.
The 27-year-old had the honour bestowed upon her by Tunisian President Kais Saied on Thursday for her “remarkable sporting successes.”
Jabeur’s long list of records includes becoming the highest ranked Arab player ever, man or woman, when she entered Wimbledon ranked second in the world.
Moreover, by reaching the final at SW19, she became the first Arab player to reach the final of a Slam.
Jabeur was eventually defeated in the Wimbledon final by Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan, but her inspirational status was not dampened in the slightest by that result.
Following that final, fans crowded the Wimbledon media centre to celebrate Jabeur’s achievements with her, as did local Tunisians when Jabeur arrived home at Tunis-Carthage International Airport this week.
President Saied hailed Jabeur for “raising high the country’s flag in international sporting events,” as well as describing her as “the ambassador for Tunisia.”
Jabeur hopes to inspire other Arab and African players to succeed in the sport, saying: “We want to give more hope to the young people who watch us. We hope to continue this momentum. We are proud to be Tunisians and we will continue with this success story.”
Jabeur has since dropped to world number five following a Wimbledon without ranking points, but she sits second in the singles race only behind dominant world number one Iga Swiatek.
Having narrowly missed out on qualification for the WTA Finals last season, should she reach the 2022 event it would be another historic moment in the career of Jabeur.
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