Ons Jabeur and Marketa Vondrousova will make their major breakthrough with victory when they face off in the 2023 Wimbledon…
Ons Jabeur and Marketa Vondrousova will make their major breakthrough with victory when they face off in the 2023 Wimbledon final.
History will be made on Centre Court on Saturday. Jabeur could become the first Arab and African grand slam champion, while Vondrousova would be the first unseeded woman to triumph at SW19.
The Czech has won both meetings this year at the Australian Open and Indian Wells, and could become the first player to beat Jabeur three times in the same season.
Although, the Tunisian prevailed in their only previous encounter on grass at Eastbourne two years ago.
That is not too surprising, mind. After all, Jabeur is appearing in her second successive Wimbledon final and has now won 28 matches on grass since 2021 – more than any other player during that span – and two of her four career titles have come on surface.
The sixth seed has taken out four major winners during her run to the showpiece, and is the first player since Serena Williams in 2012 to beat three top-10 opponents in the same year at Wimbledon.
And she is only the third player to recover from a set down three times on the way to reaching the final at SW19 – doing so against Bianca Andreescu, Elena Rybakina and Aryna Sabalenka – after Justine Henin (2001) and Marion Bartoli (2007)
Runner-up last year here and at the US Open, Jabeur is desperate to make it third time lucky and avoid becoming the first woman to lose each of her first three grand slam final since Simona Halep.
Vondrousova also hopes it will be third time lucky in a big final, having just come up short at the 2019 French Open and delayed 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
The Czech arrived at Wimbledon having never previously won successive matches at the grass-court major, boasting a far from impressive 1-4 record, but is now aiming to become her nation’s third women’s singles champion after the late Jana Novotna (1998) and Petra Kvitova (2011, 2014).
Kvitova, 12 years ago, was the last player to beat five seeds on the way to Wimbledon glory. Although, Vondrousova could match that feat here, having already taken out Veronika Kudermetova, Donna Vekic, Marie Bouzkova and Jessica Pegula – reeling off five straight games against the latter from 4-1 down in the deciding set.
The second Czech to reach a grand slam final this season after Karolina Muchova’s exploits at the French Open, the world number 42 would also be the lowest-ranked champion at SW19 – surpassing Venus Williams’ 16-year record.
The battle to lift the Venus Rosewater Dish will commence at 2pm BST on Saturday, and will be contested over the best of three sets on Centre Court at the All England Club.
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