No. 7 seed Ons Jabeur did not feel “appreciated” by the French Open crowd during her second round win over Oceane Dodin.
The Tunisian beat French player Dodin 6-2 6-3 on Court Philippe-Chatrier and although she can understand the home support for Dodin, felt the Paris crowd was “difficult” to play in front of.
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“The French crowd is a bit difficult, I would say,” she said after the match. “I don’t like it when they boo, but that’s part of the game.
“They want French players to win. In the other countries, although I hit a good shot, they appreciate not necessarily here. They prefer me to miss, but it’s part of the game.
“French spectators are passionate about tennis, and it’s a great pleasure to see that many people are watching. I have also French fans, so that’s also a great source of satisfaction.”
Dodin saved seven break points in a stubborn performance but couldn’t match the quality of Jabeur, who managed to book her spot in the third round with a match against Serbian qualifier Olga Danilovic.
“It’s definitely not the best, to have the reaction of booing and everything, even though hitting the net is part of the game and I was lucky,” she added in a positive mood. “I didn’t want to hit it that way but it was lucky for me.
“The most tricky thing during the match is not to get involved with them, because as soon as you react to what they’re doing it’s going to get heated.
“The key was to focus on what I’m doing, I cannot control what they do. I just focussed on myself and I know they will try anything to get me out of the match.”
Although she may not have appreciated the taunts and booing directed towards her, it didn’t affect her too much as she swept her opponent aside in search of her first Grand Slam title.
“I think it was a great match for me, I managed with the conditions, with the wind, and with someone that hits very hard,” she summarised after the game. “I hope I can continue playing even better for the next matches.