With a 6-7(5) 6-4 6-3 triumph over Aryna Sabalenka on Thursday, Ons Jabeur demonstrated that it is often preferable to float like a butterfly than sting like a bee. Her deft artistry overcame Sabalenka’s ferocious hitting to advance to her second Wimbledon final.
Jabeur, who lost in the final the year before, appeared destined to endure more grief on Centre Court when she dropped the first set, but the Belarusian Sabalenka’s relentless force was eventually subdued by Jabeur’s deft strokeplay and astute angles.
The victory led to a semifinal matchup between the sixth-seeded Tunisian and the unseeded Czech Marketa Vondrousova, a past finalist at the French Open who earlier on Thursday crushed the aspirations of the Ukrainian Elina Svitolina.
Jabeur, who placed second in the 2017 U.S. Open as well, dropped the first set tiebreak and trailed 4-2 in the second, but stormed back with two breaks to tie the match.
In the third set, she then got a crucial break to go up 4-2 and, after the Tunisian had missed four match points, she eventually won the match with an ace.