Ons Jabeur has revealed she was left "happy crying" after receiving plenty of messages, including from former men's world No 1 Andy Roddick, following her heartbreaking defeat in the Wimbledon final last month.
Jabeur, 28, lost her third Grand Slam final - and second successive at Wimbledon - in a surprise straight-sets loss to unseeded Czech Marketa Vondrousova as the Tunisian's agonising wait for a major title continues. Jabeur described it as the "most painful loss" of her career.
One of the most popular players on tour among peers and fans alike, Jabeur received an outpouring of support, including from Morocco men's football manager Walid Regragui, but it was a message from Roddick, who knows all to well the pain of losing the Wimbledon final.
Roddick reached the Wimbledon final three times in his career, only to come out second best to Roger Federer on each occasion. Their last meeting, in 2009, would hold particularly difficult memories for the American, who lost the fifth and final set 16-14.
“On top of being a great player and a great person, her story is incredible,” Roddick wrote in a column. “Coming from Tunisia, trailblazing for that part of the world, being so dynamic and comfortable in that role – she has a lot to be proud of.
“I actually sent her a message after the final and said, ‘Listen, if you ever want to chat, I've been where you are right now. But I have more faith in you winning Wimbledon than I ever had in myself winning Wimbledon.’ ...Take a breath, take a minute, make sure you prepare, keep your fitness going.
“She's someone I really hope wins a Grand Slam title at some point.”
After skipping last week's Canadian Open to rest and reset, Jabeur returns to action this week at the Cincinnati Masters and the Tunisian world No 5 held a press conference on Sunday, where she addressed the messages of support she received following Wimbledon.
“I got a lot of amazing messages. Andy was one of the ones I was surprised with,” she said. “And obviously I was crying, you know, happy crying. I don't know what it was, but it was very nice of him.
“I appreciate that he took the time to write a good long message. I'm definitely talking to him when I see him, probably at the US Open.”
Jabeur, seeded fifth in Cincinnati, has received a bye into the second round and will open her tournament against either China's Zhu Lin or Anhelina Kalinina of Ukraine.