French Open 2020 | Jabeur becomes first Arab woman to reach last 16


Sofia Kenin and Stefanos Tsitsipas also advanced to the fourth round.

Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur became the first Arab woman to reach the fourth round of the French Open as she beat eighth seed Aryna Sabalenka 7-6(7) 2-6 6-3 on Saturday.

The 30th seed displayed her trademark court craft to undermine Sabalenka’s power as she surpassed her previous best third round showing at Roland Garros in 2017.

Sabalenka led 5-1 in the opening set tie break, but a series of errors allowed 26-year-old Jabeur to snatch it.

Former French Open junior champion Jabeur’s level dipped in the face of some fierce Sabalenka hitting as the second set slipped away in little over 20 minutes.

But the Tunisian, who became the first Arab woman to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal in Australia this year, re-grouped and forged 3-0 ahead in the deciding set.

She also had points for a 4-0 lead, but Belarussian Sabalenka upped the intensity and the decibel level to stay in contention.

Sabalenka saved three match points at 2-5, then had a break point in the next game. But Jabeur remained composed as she brought up a match point and showed great touch to angle away a short forehand, then sealing the win with a first serve.

Kenin races into fourth round

American fourth seed Sofia Kenin stormed into the fourth round of the French Open with a 6-2 6-0 demolition of Romanian qualifier Irina Bara.

The Australian Open champion lost the first two games before turning on the power and winning the remaining 12 to reach the last 16 at Roland Garros for the second time.

Bara took her chances early on and broke for 2-0 but her hopes of a major upset were shortlived as Kenin shook her early jitters to advance.

She only had trouble finishing it off on her own serve, most of her drop shot attempts failing in embarrassing fashion.

Kenin could face a Romanian player for the third round in a row if Patricia Maria Tig beats Frenchwoman Fiona Ferro later on Saturday

Tsitsipas through to fourth round after injured Bedene retires

Greek fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas advanced to the fourth round after his opponent Aljaz Bedene retired with an ankle injury while trailing 6-1 6-2 3-1.

Slovenian Bedene, who defeated Tsitsipas in straight sets when they met at Rotterdam earlier this year, first called for the physiotherapist on Court Suzanne Lenglen to get treatment on his right ankle after going down 5-0 in the opening set.

After returning to court Bedene won the first game to get on the scoreboard and then got his ankle strapped before the start of the second set.

Tsitsipas, the reigning ATP Finals champion, kept his focus and went about his business smoothly, hitting 28 winners and breaking the 56th-ranked Bedene’s serve five times before the 31-year-old decided he could no longer continue.

In his fourth round, the Greek will play the winner of the match between Bulgarian 18th seed Grigor Dimitrov and Roberto Carballes Baena of Spain.



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