Ons Jabeur will take on top seed Iga Swiatek in US Open final

Tunisian aiming to win her first Grand Slam after thrashing Caroline Garcia 6-1, 6-3 in New York

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Ons Jabeur destroyed Caroline Garcia in straight sets to set up an US Open final against top seed Iga Swiatek.

The Tunisian ran out a comfortable 6-1, 6-3 winner to end the Frenchwoman's hot streak in the semi-finals and will now face the challenge of upsetting the world No 1 at Flushing Meadows.

Two-time French Open champion Swiatek came from behind to defeat sixth-seed Aryna Sabalenka 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 at Arthur Ashe Stadium in her last-four clash.

Jabeur will be playing in her second successive Grand Slam final, after losing to Kazakhstan's Elena Rybakina at Wimbledon in July, despite winning the first set at the All England Club.

And 28-year-old Jabeur, the fifth seed, believes she will be a far more confident player as she looks to win her first Slam.

“Just going to that [Wimbledon] final was really tough for me, especially the second set,” said Jabeur, the first Arab and African woman to reach the final in New York in the Open Era.

“But then I feel like this final, I'm going full in, I'm going for everything. "[It] Feels more real, to be honest with you, just to be in the finals again,” she told reporters.

“I'm just happy the fact that I backed up the results in Wimbledon and people are not really surprised I'm in the finals, but just going and going and just doing my thing.”

She faces the tall task of taking down Swiatek on Saturday, after the Pole survived a tough battle against Belarusian Sabalenka.

Swiatek, 21, beat Jabeur in their most recent meeting, the Rome final in May, amid an extraordinary 37-match winning streak in which she collected her second Roland-Garros title.

“Iga never loses finals, so it's going to be very tough,” said Jabeur. “It's going to be tough match. Definitely going for my revenge. I love playing on this surface, and I feel like I know exactly what to do against her.”

Garcia, seeded 17, had arrived in the semi-finals on the back of a 13-match winning streak which included a victory at the Cincinnati Masters lead-in event.

But Jabeur ruthlessly dismantled her dream of becoming the first French woman to win the US Open crown with a clinical win.

In 2020, at the Australian Open, Jabeur became the first Arab woman to reach the quarter-finals at a major and has since produced all sorts of milestones, including becoming first Arab player to break into the top 10 of the men’s or women’s rankings and the first Arab to win a WTA title.

“Definitely saying out loud what I want to do is part of me achieving things,” said Jabeur, who dropped to her knees and let out a scream when the match against Garcia ended, then followed that up by laying on her back in the middle of the court.

“I’m sure it’s a lot of pressure on her shoulders,” said Garcia. “But she looks like to be managing it really well.”

Swiatek will be aiming for her third Grand Slam title when she faces Jabeur and the pair are 2-2 in their four career meetings.

“It's always tough and I'm pretty sure it's going to be physical,” Swiatek said of next final opponent.

“She has such good hands, she is solid on the baseline and when she's going in so I have to be careful.

“I don't know what's going to happen. Right now, I'm just going to enjoy being in the final.”

Updated: September 09, 2022, 7:15 AM
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