Wimbledon 2023: Ons Jabeur defeats Elena Rybakina in quarterfinals

Image Source: Getty Images/ Ryan Pierse

As Ons Jabeur avenged her loss in last year’s final, defending champion Elena Rybakina was defeated in the Wimbledon quarterfinals.

In a rematch of the match from a year ago, sixth seed Jabeur overcame a set deficit to win 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 6-1. At 5-4, the Tunisian broke serve to win the second set and then controlled the third and final set.

Jabeur defeated Madison Keys on Thursday and will now face Aryna Sabalenka in the semifinals. The American was defeated by second-seeded Sabalenka of Belarus 6-2, 6-4, preserving her chance to capture a first Wimbledon championship and succeed Iga Swiatek as the world’s top player.

With 35 victories against Rybakina’s 21, Jabeur was far more aggressive than she was against a player known for her powerful shots last year.

Jabeur said, “Playing her is difficult, but I wish we could swap this match for the championship game from last year.”

Before the quarterfinal, Rybakina had only once dropped her serve during the whole tournament, but Jabeur applied persistent pressure on the Kazakh. Rybakina posed a threat to Jabeur’s 3-1 lead in the final, but with help from two close challenges, the Tunisian held off danger before securing the victory and setting up a match with Sabalenka in the last four.

Jabeur remarked of Sabalenka, “I noticed she won quickly, which I wasn’t delighted with. She is a phenomenal player. It will be very difficult since she strikes quickly, much like Elena. It will be a challenging match, but I’ll play with this attitude and, perhaps, the audience will support me.”

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