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Jabeur becomes first Arab player to reach a Masters final


Tunisian Ons Jabeur became the first Arab player to reach a Masters final after beating Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-2, 6-3 in the semifinal in Madrid on Thursday.

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Eighth-seeded Jabeur had created history last year when in October, she became the first Arab player to reach the top 10 of the tennis world rankings.

Alexandrova held a 6-1 head-to-head record against eighth seed Jabeur but it was the Tunisian who showed flair and impeccable court coverage to get the better of the qualifier.

“I felt like I was sick of losing against her all the time. So I came here to take my revenge,” Jabeur said in a post-match interview.

“I feel like this tournament is a revenge tournament, every match. I’m very glad with my performance. I know she plays really well, so I tried to really impose my rhythm. I’m very happy with the level I played with today.”

The pair traded breaks in the opening set but Jabeur stepped up her game to break Alexandrova at 3-2, breaking with a lob at the net.

Jabeur won her final four clash in just 61 minutes and now awaits the winner of the second semifinal between Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann and USA’s Jessica Pegula for Saturday’s summit clash.

“I really hope they play for five hours and they become tired,” Jabeur said with a laugh.

“I’m just going to focus on myself, it’s been tough losing a few finals lately. I’m going to do my best and then give it all for this one.”

(with inputs from Reuters)

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