Ons Jabeur says women still aren’t treated equally in the tennis world

Tennis star Ons Jabeur has criticized European tournament organizers for preferential treatment of male players during combined events, highlighting unequal treatment of women players in practice courts and TV coverage. Jabeur advocates for greater respect for women in tennis and a fair environment.

Jabeur Talks About Women In Tennis

Tennis player Ons Jabeur of Tunisia has made a strong statement that draws attention to the persistent gender imbalances in the game. Following her run to the Madrid Open quarterfinals, Jabeur was open about her displeasure with the unfair treatment of female athletes.

Even though tennis is one of the most popular women’s sports, Jabeur thinks more can be done. She specifically criticized European tournament organizers for giving male players preferential treatment in mixed competitions. The following are salient points from her remarks:

Getting to Practice Courts: Women athletes do not have the same access to practice courts as their male colleagues, according to Jabeur. Their performance and preparation are impacted by this discrepancy.

TV Coverage: Jabeur brought up the issue that ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) matches receive more television coverage than WTA (Women’s Tennis Association) matches. She underlined how crucial it is to highlight women’s tennis in order to motivate young girls.

Advocacy for Change: Jabeur conveyed her dissatisfaction and her wish to make a statement. She thinks that women’s contributions to sport should be recognized and respected more at European competitions, such as those held in Madrid and Rome.

Many people can relate to Jabeur’s appeal for equality, and it serves as a reminder that progress is a continuous process. In addition to maintaining her stellar play on the field, she is a strong supporter of treating all tennis players equally and with respect, regardless of gender.

This is what she said.

“I think women’s tennis has come a long way. I am very grateful for Billie Jean King and all the other women who fought hard, Serena, Maria, all of them. They’re trying to represent, you know, very well the sport. I think a lot of women players needs to be aware of it and aware what’s really happening. Sometimes I don’t really think that it’s just a question of money, but also respect. I told you so many times that people would judge women’s tennis without even watching one match. That pisses me off a lot. For me, you cannot judge a basketball match, women’s match, because it’s just a woman playing. I feel like we are sometimes programmed. You know, you open, Okay, let’s watch football. What kind of football? Is it man football?

Is it women football? Even us, I grew up just opening the TV, like Okay, let’s go watch football, Ronaldo, this, this, and that. First, we don’t have the opportunity to watch a lot of women’s sports in general, which it’s changing right now, but I think we are in 2024, we need more than that.

I want to open the TV and not just see Women’s World Cup. Men’s World Cup, can I call it Men’s World Cup, as well? These things, it’s small details that makes the difference. I feel as a woman playing, for me inspiring a whole new generation, for example, here in Spain, I would love to go to the hotel and open the TV and see a woman’s tennis match. I haven’t seen once one tennis match of a woman. All they’re showing — obviously I understand there is a lot of Spanish playing, but asking for one match? Even the female Spanish players they are not even showing.

For me it’s really frustrating to see that. How can you inspire young girls without showing any match in that? Then they say, Okay, men’s tennis is better.”

Jabeur in Madrid, ranking, and results in 2024

Ons Jabeur

14 - 12win/loss

29 year old
2024 Highlights

Ranked no.9, Ons owns a composed 6-7 match record in 2024. Ons is competing in Madrid where she beat the world no.68 Anna Schmiedlova 6-4 5-7 6-3, the world no.35 Leylah Annie Fernandez 7-5 2-6 6-4 and the world no.10 Jelena Ostapenko 6-0 6-4.

Ons won 5 titles in her career: 1 on hard courts, 2 on clay courts and 2 on grass courts. (See the list of her titles)

Jabeur's Record