When Ons Jabeur sealed the stage that made her the first Arab to reach the finals of the Wimbledon on Thursday, all she could think about was rushing to her defeated barbecue partner on the internet to hug Tatjuna María tightly.
While Jabeur coach Issam Jellali jumped to his feet with his arms raised to join 15,000 cheering fans in celebrating the first African woman to qualify for the title, Jabeur simply smiled as she finished Maria’s incredible run 6-2 3-6 6- 1 victory.
On the eve of the competition, Jabeur had promised that “the hug at the end would be amazing” and she was not wrong.
The two players held each other across the net for what seemed like an eternity and both whispered in each other’s ears.
With the cheers still circling around Center Court, Jabeur pulled Maria to her side on the pitch and joined in the applause to greet the 34-year-old who had become the mother of two children at the Wimbledon semi-finals since Margaret Court in 1975.
“I do not know what to say. It is a dream come true of many years of hard work and self-sacrifice. I am happy that this has paid off and I will continue for one more game, “Jabeur told the audience after setting up the final match with either Romanian champion Simona Halep 2019 or Russian-born Kazakh 17th place Elena Rybakina.
“It was harder to run after her balls. She has to grill for me now for all the races I took on the field!
“I wanted to share the moment with her in the end because she is such an inspiration to so many, including me, to come back after having two children, I do not believe how she did it.
“Physically, Tatjana is a beast, she will not give up … Let’s not play again, I’m fine for now!
Before the players entered the stadium, the American big team Billie Jean King said that Jabeur was “using tennis as a platform to help Tunisia, help Africa and help the Arabs” and the Tunisian did just that when she won Maria for the first time in the main tournament series. scoring game.
“I am a proud Tunisian woman standing here today – I know that in Tunisia they are going crazy now,” said the third man, who until this week had never surpassed the last eight in a major tournament.
“I just try to encourage as much as I can – I want to see more Arab and African players on the tour, I love the game and I want to share the experience with them.
“I saw some teenagers playing out there and I hope to see them here at Center Court one day.
While 27-year-old Jabeur was inspiring a continent, Maria wants to show her two young daughters that it’s never too late to pursue your dreams.
The Australian Grand Duchy was among those watching from the Royal Box when Maria was forced to save three breakaways in the opening game.
However, the 103rd-ranked German could not extend the resistance as she missed a pass in the third and seventh games before Jabeur sealed the opening set when Maria struck a long backhand.
However, Maria refused to give an opponent she calls a “family” victory on a plate as she broke for a 3-1 lead in the second and kept the lead to equalize when the third seed sliced back into the net.
But Jabeur finally lived at number two in the world to run away with the third set and reached the most important point of his career to date when Maria stepped forward into the net.
Jabeur from Tunisia pulls Maria down and becomes the first Arab in the finals – SABC News
Source link Jabeur from Tunisia pulls Maria down and becomes the first Arab in the finals – SABC News