Ons Jabeur ready for revenge after setting up Elena Rybakina rematch

By Sports Desk July 10, 2023

Ons Jabeur set up a rematch of last year’s Wimbledon final after booking a quarter-final date with Elena Rybakina.

Jabeur, the sixth seed, was beaten in the showpiece match as Rybakina won her first grand slam title 12 months ago but she will be out for revenge when they meet in the last-eight on Wednesday.

She got there with a demolition of two-time champion Petra Kvitova on Centre Court, dishing out a 6-0 6-3 hammering in little over an hour.

The Tunisian brought her best game to the proceedings, delighting fans with drop shots, passing winners on the run and thunderbolts from the baseline as she made herself a real contender once again.

Kvitova, winner here in 2011 and 2014, was a shadow of her former self and struggled to cope with Jabeur’s variety, sending down 22 unforced errors.

“I don’t know who played today,” Jabeur joked. “It’s amazing, I love how Petra plays.

“I respect what she has done for women’s tennis, for me to be able to win against her is huge.

“(The quarter-final) will be a difficult match, I am going for my revenge, it was a difficult final last year, it is going to bring a lot of memories, I am hoping to play like today and get the win, it will be a difficult match.”


Rybakina will go into the rematch fresh after she was on court for just 21 minutes before her last-16 opponent Beatriz Haddad Maia retired through injury.

 

The Brazilian was enjoying her best run at Wimbledon, having never previously got past the second round, but hopes of a first quarter-final appearance were taken away from her when she suffered an injury early in the first set.

She had a lengthy medical timeout trailing 3-1 and tried to carry on but after being unable to move during a Rybakina service game it was clear that she could not continue.

She said: “I’m very upset now because I didn’t have the chance to, well, keep playing.

“Especially my first time on Centre Court here in Wimbledon, which is my favourite tournament.”

Aryna Sabalenka’s victory over Ekaterina Alexandrova ensured all of the women’s ‘big three’ made it to the last-eight.

The Belarusian is enjoying every minute of being back at this year’s tournament and did not waste much time in getting the better of the 21st seed, winning 6-4 6-0 on Court One.

She now plays Maddison Keys in the last-eight, in what will a mouth-watering encounter, and her eyes will be firmly fixed on a possible semi-final clash with Rybakina.

The first set was even and on serve until Sabalenka struck at 5-4 to take the lead and that gave her the platform for a dominant second set, which saw her bagel the Russian in 27 minutes.

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