Ons Jabeur is happy about the impact she is having on tennis in Tunisia as the 2022 Wimbledon finalist says she “feels like Michael Schumacher” while driving in Tunisia. Jabeur, 28, is the first Arab player to reach a Grand Slam final – win a WTA 1000 title – be ranked inside the top-10.
Jabeur is now one of the most successful Arab athletes and she has single-handedly increased the popularity of tennis in Arab countries. “It’s really amazing, you know. The part that changed a lot is, even going to have a coffee or something, people come and support me.
[Even when I am] Driving, people are shouting – Ons. I feel like Schumacher. Driving, you know. It’s really amazing and what’s crazy in Tunisia is, they watch soccer – it’s the national sport in Europe, in Tunisia, and now people watch more tennis than that!
Which is crazy! You can see in the cafes. They probably don’t know what the score is, but they are still watching. You know, to encourage me and that means a lot to me,” Jabeur said on Tennis Channel.
How did Jabeur get into tennis?
Tennis wasn’t really a popular sport in Tunisia when Jabeur was a kid.
But Jabeur’s mother loved tennis and she took Ons to a tennis club in Monastir. The rest is history as Jabeur is now already the most successful Arab tennis player ever. “My mom loved tennis and because I was the youngest, she took me with her to the Tennis Club.
I just had so much energy and the club was the perfect place for me to be. Tennis is my world; the tennis court is a place where I feel free. It’s just something that I’m very blessed to have in my life; it’s great to do what you love, and I truly love tennis,” Jabeur told Vogua Arabia earlier this year.