Irresistible until his lost final at Wimbledon, Ons Jabeur seems to drag his spleen on all the courts of the world since this failure which is perhaps not yet completely digested. Eliminated as soon as it entered the running in Toronto, she was miraculous in the previous round in this Cincinnati WTA 1000. Facing the wild-card Catherine McNally, her attitude on the court was far from calm, but her natural talent made the difference at the end of the match.
This Thursday against Petra Kvitova, despite a renewed fighting spirit in the second set, Jabeur could not exceed his current limits (6-1, 4-6, 6-0). In the first set, everything went too fast for the Tunisian. Kvitova was playing long in the middle and not giving him any angles. In difficulty in her little footwork, the world n°5 could not find the solution and the punishment was quite logical.
With newfound mobility, she began to perform miracles in defense in the second set, robbing her opponent of the free points that had accrued in the first set. But Jabeur was not serene for all that. She felt frustrated and close to implosion. His racket has also been a regular outlet. Jabeur broke away with a quick break, but Kvitova broke and came back to 4-4.
Nervous also, the Czech made two double faults at the worst time and Jabeur took the opportunity to afford a first set point. Kvitova got away with a full-line ball that Jabeur deemed a foul, but the video confirmed the linesman’s call. On a second set point, Kvitova released a winning service. In this endless game, Jabeur got a third chance to come back to one set everywhere. His return pushed Kvitova to the fault, mission accomplished.
We must then pay tribute to Kvitova who was absolutely not let down by this return. The Czech regained her efficiency from the first set and Jabeur couldn’t do anything. Faced with the acceleration of her opponent, she simply remained rooted to the spot, conceding a cruel, but justified, 6-0 in the last set. At the end of this fine demonstration, Petra Kvitova qualified for her fourth quarter-final in Cincinnati.