Fifth seed Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan will meet sixth seed Ons Jabeur of Tunisia in the semifinal of the 2021 Chicago Open on Saturday, October 2. Get the live streaming options of this Elena Rybakina v Ons Jabeur match along with its preview, head to head, and tips here.
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Elena Rybakina v Ons Jabeur Head to Head
They are 1-1 from their previous two meetings. While Rybakina won in three in Wuhan in 2019, Jabeur got her revenge this year in Dubai, also winning in three.
Rybakina Advances Following Bencic Injury
Elena Rybakina advanced to the semifinals in Chicago after Belinda Bencic was forced to retire due to a right knee injury that she picked up during the second set of the quarterfinal fixture on Friday.
Bencic was trailing Rybakina 4-6, 1-3 when the unfortunate injury ended the contest. The Swiss had beaten the Kazakh in their only previous meeting at the Olympics semifinal this year.
With the win the World No. 17 is now into her third semifinal of the season. A five-time tour-level finalist last year, Rybakina is yet to reach one this year. Besides the dramatic three-set defeat to Bencic in Tokyo, she also lost the Eastbourne semifinals to Jelena Ostapenko.
The 22-year-old, who lost to Iga Swiatek in the Ostrava Open quarterfinal last week, is yet to drop a set this week. She defeated Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-4, 6-4 in the first round and Veronika Kudermetova 7-6 (7-4), 7-5 in the round of 16.
She will be happy to have prevented her opponents from taking her to three sets this week, as she has a poor 5-11 record in the deciding sets this year.
Jabeur Topples the Top Seed
Ons Jabeur ended Elina Svitolina’s streak in Chicago with a straight sets win in the quarterfinal on Friday.
Svitolina, who won her only title of the season in Chicago just before the start of the U.S. Open, had extended her unbeaten run to seven matches in the Windy City after easing past her first two opponents, but couldn’t match up to the level of the Tunisian, who recorded her first win over the World No. 6 in what was a fourth meeting in their professional career.
Jabeur needed just an hour and 22 minutes to dispatch the Ukrainian 6-4, 6-2. Both players had seven break points in the first set, with Jabeur capitalising on two of those chances while Svitolina taking just one of them. Both had multiple opportunities to break serve in the second as well, but once again Jabeur did well in saving all five of the break points that she faced and converted two of six.
The win improved Jabeur to 43-16 this season. On Saturday, she will be aiming to reach a third final this year. Jabeur lost the Charleston 250 title to Astra Sharma but won her maiden WTA title in Birmingham by defeating Daria Kasatkina in the final.
Jabeur began her Chicago campaign with a 6-1, 6-0 drubbing of Hsieh Su-wei in the Round of 32 and then rallied from a set down to beat Jessica Pegula 1-6, 6-2, 6-3 in the Round of 16.
Rybakina v Jabeur Prediction and Tip
This is going to be a very close contest and may go the distance once again, just like their previous two meetings.
Jabeur has been in outstanding form this year and knows how to thrive in pressure situations, in contrast, Rybakina has constantly struggled in pressure situations this season. Hence the Tunisian will be the favourite to advance.