Tennis: Tennis-Jabeur rallies past Bouzkova to reach maiden major semi-final


LONDON (Reuters) -Tunisian third seed Ons Jabeur, the best surviving seed within the ladies’s draw, recovered from dropping her first set at this yr’s Wimbledon to beat Czech Marie Bouzkova 3-6 6-1 6-1 on Tuesday and reach her maiden Grand Slam semi-final.

Since happening within the opening spherical at this yr’s Roland Garros in a shock defeat, Jabeur has gained 10 straight matches on grass, having arrived on the All England Club with a title in Berlin within the lead-up.

Currently taking part in at her highest profession rating of second, Jabeur will subsequent meet her pal — 103rd-ranked Tatjana Maria, who earlier beat fellow German Jule Niemeier, for a spot in Saturday’s ultimate.

Jabeur mentioned it is going to be robust to play towards her “barbecue buddy” Maria, who returned from maternity depart solely final summer season after giving delivery to her second daughter and reached her first major semi-final on the forty seventh try.

“I really like Tatjana a lot and her household is absolutely superb,” Jabeur mentioned. “She’s an incredible pal. I’m actually blissful for her that she’s within the semi-final.

“She’s one of many examples that I want gamers search for to as a result of she actually suffered to play and to win rounds in Grand Slams and take a look at her now. She’s in a semi-final after having two infants. It’s a extremely superb story.”

The story of Jabeur, 27, has been no much less superb as she grew to become the primary Arab to reach a Grand Slam singles semi-final and is bidding to turn out to be the primary girl from Africa to win a major.

Coming into her second straight Wimbledon quarter-final, Jabeur had but to lose a set in her 4 rounds, not permitting opponents to settle along with her gamut of forceful serves, highly effective forehands, deft slices and well-disguised drop photographs.

She used loads of drop photographs within the opening levels of the primary set towards Bouzkova however the 23-year-old Czech learn them nicely to blunt one of many Tunisian’s foremost weapons.


Jabeur failed to discover a approach past the Czech’s stoic defence as Bouzkova chased down most of her groundstrokes and was rewarded with a break of serve within the fifth recreation. A second break within the ninth acquired her the opening set.

As the primary set Jabeur had misplaced on this yr’s match it appeared to get up the Tunisian.

The 27-year-old stepped up her aggression, began hitting her groundstrokes flatter and broke Bouzkova’s first service recreation of the second set.

A second and a 3rd break adopted and the Tunisian quickly levelled the match as her favorite drop photographs as soon as once more discovered the mark on the plush inexperienced lawns.

The Czech, who got here into the Centre Court contest with six profession wins over top-10 gamers, headed off for a prolonged lavatory break however couldn’t change the momentum.

Bouzkova, who had by no means acquired past the second spherical of a Grand Slam earlier than this yr’s championships, was 40-0 up within the second recreation when Jabeur gained 5 straight factors to break serve after which consolidated her benefit with a maintain to love.

Jabeur had gained eight straight video games to leap right into a 4-0 lead earlier than the Czech halted the juggernaut with a break to get on board within the third set.

However, it proved to be solely a minor hiccup for Jabeur who picked up one other break within the subsequent recreation after which held serve to love to seal the competition on her first match level.

“I knew she was going to come and actually make me work to win a degree,” Jabeur mentioned. “She’s a proficient participant, and I’m actually blissful that I awakened through the second set and I performed a lot better within the third set.”

(Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; enhancing by Ken Ferris)

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