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Meet Ons Jabeur's coach Issam Jellali as Tunisian bids for Wimbledon title

Joshua Rogers July 7, 2022
Meet Ons Jabeur's coach Issam Jellali as Tunisian bids for Wimbledon title
Photo by Robert Prange/Getty Images

Meet Ons Jabeur’s coach Issam Jellali as the Tunisian bids for a Wimbledon title. She faces Tatjana Maria in the semi-finals on Thursday, 7 July.

Ons Jabeur is the current No. 1 Tunisian player and world no.2 and is bidding for her first Grand Slam title. The 27-year-old is into her first major semi-final having reached the quarter-finals at the 2020 Australian Open and last year’s Wimbledon.

On 7 July, she takes on good friend Tatjana Maria for a place in the Wimbledon final. In the first round she beat Sweden’s Mirjam Bjorklund before overcoming Poland’s Katarzyna Kawa in the second round.

She then beat Diane Parry before facing Elise Mertens in the Round of 16. Jabeur won that match in straight sets and then beat Czech player Marie Bouzková in the quarter-final.

Photo by Rob Newell – CameraSport via Getty Images

Jabeur’s parents and early life

The Tunisian star was born on 28 August 1994 in Ksar Hellal, a small town in Tunisia. Ons Jabeur’s parents are Samira and Ridha Jabeur, and she is one of four children – she has two older brothers, Hatem and Marwen, and an older sister, Yasmine.

Ons’ mother, who played tennis casually, introduced her to the sport at an early age. Speaking to the WTA in 2019, Ons said her parents sacrified a lot for her growing up and drove her all over Tunisia to play.

Her mother also enabled her to go to a special school to study and gave her the confidence and belief she needed to succeed.

That school was the Lycée Sportif El Menzah, in the capital city of Tunis. Jabeur moved to Tunis at the age of 12 to train and stayed there for several years. Ons later moved to Belgium and France to train.

Photo by Cameron Smith/Getty Images

Who is Ons Jabeur’s current coach?

Ons was coached by Bertrand Perret from 2018 to 2020. However, Ons Jabeur’s current coach is Issam Jellali, who is a former Tunisian ATP and Davis Cup player.

Issam was born in Tunisia in 1981 and went on to coach and play on the ITF and Challenger circuits for more than 15 years.

He now owns and presides over a tennis academy in Dubai, and also coached several top-100 ATP players including Malek Jaziri and Damir Dzumhur.

Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images

Under Jellai’s tutelage, Ons won her first WTA title at the 2021 Birmingham Classic, becoming the first Arab woman to win a WTA Tour title.

She also won her first WTA 1000 title at the 2022 Madrid Open, becoming the first African and Arab player to win a title at that level.

Do you think Ons can win Wimbledon this year? Let us know in the comments below!

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Joshua is a senior sports writer with over four years' experience in online writing. He graduated with a BA in Ancient History from The University of Manchester before receiving an MA in Sports Journalism from The University of Central Lancashire. He became a trending writer for a leading social publisher and later spent time covering the 2018 World Cup for The Mirror Online. He then moved to a social marketing agency where he acted as website editor. His specialties on The Focus include F1, tennis, NBA, NFL and combat sports.