Beatriz Haddad Maia could hardly believe her victory herself at first
Photo: Clive Mason / Getty Images
Beatriz Haddad Maia continues to write her surprising success story in Paris and has reached a Grand Slam semi-final for the first time in her career. In the quarterfinals of the French Open, the 27-year-old beat Tunisian Ons Jabeur 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-1 after a convincing performance.
She is the first Brazilian woman in 55 years to achieve this feat. Maria Bueno reached the quarterfinals at the 1966 French Open and reached the semifinals at the 1968 US Open. At that time, however, only amateurs were allowed to participate in the tournaments. Haddad Maia is the first Brazilian athlete to reach the semi-finals in the professional era.
Showdown decides opponent in the semi-finals
Previously, Haddad Maia, who had beaten Germany's Tatjana Maria in round one, had never made it past the second round at a major. In the round of sixteen, she had prevailed in the third-longest women's match at the clay court Grand Slam since records began in 1968 after almost four hours of play against the Spaniard Sara Sorribes Tormo.
Against the seventh in the world rankings Jabeur, the strength was still enough for a comeback after falling behind. "I had to be patient. She's one of the best players in the world," said Haddad Maia on the pitch. It's not easy to play against them. It's tricky sometimes." She always believed that the game would be long. "That was the key. I tried to keep my game," she continued.
In the semi-finals, the absolute top favorite could be waiting. World number one and defending champion Iga Świątek from Poland will face Coco Gauff (USA) early Wednesday afternoon in the new edition of last year's final.
Jabeur, on the other hand, missed her third semi-final at a Grand Slam. In Wimbledon and New York, she even made it to the finals last year, but failed there in each case.