Ons Jabeur was her classy and humorous self in defeat after losing out on the 2022 US Open title to World No. 1 Iga Swiatek on Saturday. The Tunisian superstar, who became the first player from her country to reach the US Open final on Friday, fell just short in the second-set tiebreak as Swiatek clinched the title with a 6-2, 7-6(5) victory.
Jabeur admitted that Swiatek did not allow her enough of an opportunity to force a deciding set or even dominate any phase of the match. She joked about ‘not liking’ Swiatek after losing to her and vowed to return to yet another Grand Slam final and win her maiden title sooner rather than later.
The two players shared a warm embrace after Swiatek won the match with a forehand from Jabeur going long. The Tunisian player reflected on her past fortnight in New York and lauded Swiatek during the trophy presentation ceremony.
“I want to thank the crowd for cheering me up. I really tried but Iga did not make it easy for me. She deserves to win today. I don’t like her very much right now, but it’s okay,” Ons Jabeur said.
Jabeur backed up her run to the Wimbledon final with the US Open final in a span of two months. While a Major title still eludes her, Jabeur is confident it is not too far away.
“Amazing two weeks to be honest with you, backing up my final in Wimbledon. I know I’m gonna keep working hard and I will get that title sometime soon,” she added.
In Saturday’s final, Jabeur forced a tiebreak despite being 0-3, 15-40 down in the second set. She saved a match point as well before the tiebreak.
“Hopefully I can inspire more and more generations” – Ons Jabeur after the US Open final
Ons Jabeur became the first woman from Africa to reach a Grand Slam singles final at Wimbledon and made more history with her run at the US Open. The Tunisian player, who is regarded as a trailblazer by many, expressed her desire to inspire generations of tennis players in her country and have more Tunisian players competing at the top level of the sport.
“It really means a lot and I try to push myself to do more. Getting the Major is one of the goals and hopefully I can inspire more and more generations, thats the goal,” Ons Jabeur said on the same.
She then thanked the likes of Martina Navratilova and Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, who were both present at Arthur Ashe Stadium for the final, for having inspired her. Jabeur aims to set a similar example for upcoming tennis players from Tunisia and beyond.
“I get inspired by so many champions. Martina here, she inspired us and thank you for being here. And Arantxa. Thank you also to my team, they always have been pushing me…my management team, my friends. The president of the (Tunisian tennis) federation, we want more and more kids coming here hopefully. I really hope I can inspire more and more and this is just the beginning of so many things,” Ons Jabuer concluded.
A strong run in New York confirmed Ons Jabeur’s rise to the World No. 2 spot, just behind Swiatek, and will be reflected when the updated WTA rankings are released on Monday.