Monday, July 4, 2022

Jabeur exits French Open after shock defeat by Linette

Jabeur exits French Open after shock defeat by Linette

PARIS (Reuters) - Tunisian Ons Jabeur became the first major casualty on the opening day of the French Open on Sunday when the in-form sixth seed crashed out with a 3-6 7-6(4) 7-5 loss to Poland's Magda Linette.

Jabeur, seen as one of the big threats to world number one Iga Swiatek at the claycourt Grand Slam, came to Paris with a tour-leading 17 wins on the surface and made a strong start against the 52nd-ranked Linette on Court Philippe Chatrier under overcast skies.

The 27-year-old suffered an early break of serve before breezing through the opening set in 37 minutes but Linette raised her game.

Linette, 30, had only defeated Jabeur in the first of their four meetings back in 2013 but she staged an inspired fightback in the second set, saving four breakpoints to level the match in the tiebreak.

As drops of rain fell on the main showcourt, Jabeur's level also dipped and she made her frustration evident by kicking balls away after losing points.

The Pole, who lost to Jabeur in the third round last year, sealed the match when the Tunisian wasted a 40-0 lead in the 12th game and found the net on match point to be broken for the second time in the set.

Linette will next play Martina Trevisan of Italy or Briton Harriet Dart.