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Tunisian Ons Jabeur creates history with her Madrid Open title, becomes the first African player to win a WTA 1000 tournament

The Tunisian will equal her career-high ranking of No 7 on Monday.

Ons Jabeur

With a thrilling victory over Jessica Pegula in the Madrid Open final, Ons Jabeur became the first African player to win a WTA Masters 1000 event. In just under two hours, the two-time Grand Slam quarterfinalist defeated the American 7-5 0-6 6-2 to win her second career title on Spanish soil.

Jabeur had to fight back from a set point in the first set before recovering from a second-set bagel to claim her first career title in Madrid. Pegula survived a flurry of break opportunities to take a 4-1 lead, but Jabeur’s aggressive strategy paid off as she won six of the final seven games to take the lead.

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“I’m really pleased to get the win”- Ons Jabeur

Ons Jabeur

Jabeur had been in sensational form at the claycourt competition, and the 27-year-old put in a determined performance against Pegula to finish off her trip to the Spanish capital. Jabeur got off to a rough start, falling behind 1-4 in the opener but rallied to tie the game at 4-4, thanks to a few loose baseline errors by Pegula.

Ons Jabeur, the first Arab player to reach the top ten in the world rankings, displayed her flair and battling spirit by saving a set point at 4-5 before serving out the set. The Tunisian, however, lost her hold in the second set when Pegula handed her a bagel, but she recovered admirably and appeared unstoppable.

The world number ten was at her most aggressive in the decider, battling through a long deuce game and breaking on her first opportunity to take a double-break lead and a chance to serve out the victory. Jabeur collapsed to the ground after winning her first WTA 1000 title and being the first African player to do so. “To my team, for all the hard work we’ve been doing, I’ve lost a lot of finals, but I’m really pleased to get the win,” she expressed after the match.

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Also Read: ‘This is a revenge tournament,’ Ons Jabeur scripts history by becoming the first African player to reach a WTA 1000 Final at the Madrid Open