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Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur Becomes First African Woman to Reach Major Tennis Final

Ons Jabeur reached her first Grand Slam final by beating Tatjana Maria 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 on Wimbledon center court, a victory that also marks the debut of Arab and African women.

The Tunisian is the first Arab woman to reach a grand final and the first African woman to do so in the Open era.

Third-placed Jabeur will face 2019 Wimbledon champion Simona Halep or Elena Rybakina in Saturday’s final.

In the deciding set, Jabeur broke her 34-year-old German opponent—who was a first-time Grand Slam semi-finalist—twice en route to a 5-0 lead.

Jabeur

This was Maria’s 35th appearance in a major tournament, and the 103rd place finisher had never advanced beyond the third round.

Elena Rybakina defeated 2019 champion Simona Halep 6-3 on center court to score a Wimbledon final against Ons Jabeur.

Both Rybakina, 17th, and Jabeur, 3rd, are rookie Grand Slam finalists.

Rybakina is the first player from Kazakhstan to reach a grand final. Jabeur is the first Arab woman to reach a grand final and the first African woman to do so in the open era.

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Rybakina, 23, is the youngest Wimbledon finalist since 2015, when Garbiñe Muguruza lost to Serena Williams.

Tunisia's Ons Jabeur Becomes First African Woman to Reach Major Tennis Final

Halep, the winner of the 2018 French Open, reached the semi-finals without losing a set, but was broken early in both sets.

The 30-year-old Romanian was unable to defend her Wimbledon title last year—after the 2020 edition was canceled—due to a calf injury.

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