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Tunisian star Jabeur beats Halep to reach Madrid semifinal

The first ever Arab tennis player to reach the top 10 in world rankings, Jabeur is through to the second WTA 1000 semifinal of her career



Tunisia's Ons Jabeur hits a forehand return during her quarterfinal match against Romania's Simona Halep. (Reuters)
Tunisia's Ons Jabeur hits a forehand return during her quarterfinal match against Romania's Simona Halep. (Reuters)

By AFP

Published: Wed 4 May 2022, 6:38 PM

Ons Jabeur marched into the semifinals of the Madrid Open on Wednesday with a crushing 6-3, 6-2 win over former world number one Simona Halep.

After avenging her Charleston final defeat to Belinda Bencic in the previous round, the Tunisian world number 10 reversed her result against Halep from Dubai three months ago, sweeping the Romanian aside in just 67 minutes.

The first ever Arab tennis player to crack the top 10, Jabeur is through to the second WTA 1000 semifinal of her career and awaits the winner of the clash between Amanda Anisimova and Ekaterina Alexandrova.

“Simona, it’s never easy to play against her, she’s a great champion, she was number one, a grand slam champion,” said the 27-year-old Jabeur, who is now 2-2 against Halep head-to-head.

“I was more aggressive this time, physically much better on the court. My drop shot helped me a lot today. I’m very happy with the attitude today, so hopefully we’ll continue with this level.”

Halep drew first blood, inching ahead 2-1 but Jabeur scooped the next three games and sealed the set with a flashy point that ended with a forehand down-the-line winner.

Jabeur continued to pepper Halep with her signature drop shot, earning two breaks in the second set en route to a convincing victory.


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