“Really Couldn’t Read”: Astra Sharma Opens Up on Winning Her Maiden Title Against Ons Jabeur

Published 04/19/2021, 11:05 AM EDT


Australian tennis player Astra Sharma beat Tunisian ace Ons Jabeur in three sets to win her maiden title at WTA Charleston 2. It was a huge upset considering Jabeur was the top seed at the event and her opponent had never won a title on tour before.

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Astra Sharma, who sits on the fringes of the top 100 WTA Rankings, spoke highly of Jabeur following her victory.

In the subsequent press conference, Astra spoke about how tough of an opponent Jabeur is. In the match, Ons had taken a dominant first-set lead but Astra made a stupendous comeback to win.

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“I thought Ons played an amazing first set. I didn’t know, really, what to do. She was wrong-footing me, she was drop-shotting me, she was making me cover a lot of court, and I really couldn’t read what she was doing.”

Ons Jabeur of Tunisia plays a forehand during her Women’s Singles fourth round match against Qiang Wang of China on day seven of the 2020 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2020, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Fred Lee/Getty Images)

Astra Sharma on her comeback against Ons Jabeur in the final

Mentioning her wrongdoings in the first set, Astra then spoke about how she overturned the tie in the second set. As the conditions got tougher on the clay courts of Charleston, Astra increased her intensity to trouble a tired Ons Jabeur.

“I think in the second set, I managed to get a little sniff here and there. And by the third set, it was hot, humid, and I think I was a little bit more energetic than her and my intensity was still the same, so I think that was what eventually gave me the lead.”

This was Astra’s second appearance in a WTA tournament final. Her first final came in 2019 in Colombia. She lost that match against Amanda Anisimova.

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“To come out of this with a win, it’s really unexpected, it’s amazing for me, I have no words. It hasn’t really sunk in that I won, I’m so happy.” Astra said after her victory.

The wait for a first WTA title continues for Jabeur. She has now been unsuccessful in two finals. Despite reaching a Grand Slam quarterfinal at the Australian Open and commanding a top 30 ranking, Ons Jabeur still remains empty-handed.

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Bhavishya Mittal

962 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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