Danka Kovinic, Ons Jabeur to face off for trip to Volvo Car Open final

Danka Kovinic, Ons Jabeur to face off for trip to Volvo Car Open final

On Friday in Charleston, Kovinic battled past No. 11 seed Yulia Putintseva in three sets, before Jabeur avenged a pair of 2020 defeats to Coco Gauff.

In 2020, Coco Gauff got the best of Ons Jabeur twice after the WTA restart. On Friday at the Volvo Car Open in Charleston, S.C., Jabeur ensured their first 2021 meeting yielded a different outcome.

Seeded No. 12, Jabeur defeated the No. 14 seed, 6-3, 6-3, to move into her fourth career WTA semifinal. Jabeur saved 10 of the 13 break points she faced, while converting six of her nine opportunities against the 17-year-old.

"I gotta say the drop shot saved me so many times in the match, in many important points. The serve wasn't here today, but I'm glad I got to break her so many times," Jabeur told Steve Weissman at the Tennis Channel Desk. "I was trying to close up some angles with her, so she was a little bit confused. That helped me a lot to get a few double faults. For me, I was focusing on my game, changing the rhythm."

Weissman then asked if Jabeur recalled what she said earlier this year regarding her goals.

"Yes, I said no more quarterfinals," laughed the Tunisian. "Now, no more semifinals."

Volvo Car Open/Chris Smith

Standing between Jabeur and Sunday’s final is red-hot Danka Kovinic. The 26-year-old turned the tide, before pulling away from No. 11 seed Yulia Putintseva, 6-7 (2), 7-5, 6-1. Kovinic added to earlier victories over rising Canadian Leylah Fernandez and No. 4 seed Petra Kvitova in booking her final-four spot.

“I’m very proud of myself that I stayed composed during the whole match. I think that was the main key for my win today,” she said on Tennis Channel.

“I’m in a good mood right now. My game is getter better and better. Last year, when we returned back, somehow I changed my mindset on the court where I really believed I could beat good players, maybe the best ones in our sport.”

Both Kovinic and Jabeur are bidding to lift their first tour-level singles trophy this weekend.