Ons Jabeur reaches quarter-finals at Australian Open

Tunisian becomes the first Arab woman to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final
Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur celebrates after a victory against China’s Wang Qiang during their women’s singles match on day seven of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on January 26, 2020. (Photo by Greg Wood / AFP) / IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE – STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE

Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur has progressed to her first Grand Slam quarter-final after seeing off China’s Qiang Wang 7-6, 6-1 at the ongoing Australian Open.

The unseeded Tunisian struck 29 winners to knock out Serena Williams’ conqueror in the intriguing tie. Jabeur was at her best at the Margaret Court Arena as she put yet another powerful display to become the first Arab woman to reach the quarter-final of a Grand Slam.

“(I am) trying to inspire many young generations back home either in Tunisia or the Arabic world, especially in Africa, which is amazing”. “It’s not impossible. I made it.”

Jabeur, who accounted for the early retirement of former world number one Caroline Wozniacki in the previous round, referred to herself as a “100% Tunisian product” after turning down several opportunities to train abroad to continue developing her game at home.

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“I got a lot of offers to go to college in the U.S. This wasn’t really an option for me,” said Jabeur, who is ranked 78th in the world.

“I wanted to really go pro directly. I knew if I play in college, I cannot play professional tournaments.

“We don’t have much experience in Tunisia. But hopefully now we can see more and more.”

“The first set was tricky little bit because I started good, but then went down little bit, couldn’t win my serve,” Jabeur said.

“Obviously second set was amazing for me. I was really relaxed… I’m happy that I went through.”

She will next face American Sofia Kenin, seeded 14th, after she saw off fast rising compatriot Coco Gauff to qualify for her first Grand Slam quarter-final.

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