U.S. Open: Iga Swiatek, Ons Jabeur set final between world’s best players of 2022

·2 min read
Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek

Iga Swiatek and Ons Jabeur have been the best tennis players in 2022, and they will finish the last major event of the year by facing off for the U.S. Open title.

Swiatek, the world No. 1 from Poland, rallied past Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 in Thursday’s semifinals to reach her third Grand Slam singles final. She won the other two at the French Open in 2020 and again three months ago.

U.S. OPEN DRAWS: Women | Men

Earlier, Tunisia’s Jabeur swept Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia 6-1, 6-3 to reach her second consecutive Grand Slam final. Jabeur, the Wimbledon runner-up, had eight aces despite getting just 43 percent of her first serves in (23 total).

Swiatek-Jabeur is the first U.S. Open final pitting the top two women in the season race standings since 2013 (Serena WilliamsVictoria Azarenka).

“Iga never loses finals, so it’s going to be very tough,” said Jabeur, who is 2-2 against Swiatek and lost their last match in Rome in May. “I know she struggled a little bit with the balls here, but I don’t see her struggling much, to be honest with you. She’s playing awesome. It’s going to be tough match. Definitely going for my revenge.”

The 28-year-old Jabeur is the only African woman and Arab or North African man or woman to reach a major final in the Open Era. She was the higher seed in the Wimbledon final in July, but Kazakh Elena Rybakina rallied past her 3-6, 6-2, 6-2.

“[This] feels more real,” Jabeur said. “At Wimbledon I was kind of just living the dream, and I couldn’t believe it.

“Now maybe I know what to do in the finals.”

Garcia, the former world No. 4 in 2018 who tumbled to No. 79 earlier this year, had her 13-match win streak snapped in her first major semifinal. A dominant player in her first five matches at the U.S. Open, she had nearly twice as many unforced errors as winners against Jabeur.

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U.S. Open: Iga Swiatek, Ons Jabeur set final between world’s best players of 2022 originally appeared on NBCSports.com