Wimbledon 2023 Semifinal Preview: Svitolina vs. Vondrousova; Sabalenka vs. Jabeur

Wimbledon 2023 Semifinal Preview: Svitolina vs. Vondrousova; Sabalenka vs. Jabeur

4 min read

The Wimbledon women’s semifinals are set, but Universal Tennis INSIGHTS has it pegged as a three-woman race for the 2023 Wimbledon title. Who is the top favorite and who is on the outside of the top trio? Let’s preview Thursday’s semifinals.

(WC) Elina Svitolina (UTR Rating 12.53) vs. Marketa Vondrousova (12.87)

Elina Svitolina is the story of the 2023 Championships. She gave birth in October to her daughter, Skaï, and is playing for much more than herself as her country continues to be mired in a war against Russia. Yet Svitolina has matched her best result at a Grand Slam by reaching her third major semifinal (also 2019 Wimbledon, 2019 US Open).

“If I’m going out to play this match against Russian, Belarusian, I feel, of course more pressure that I need to win. That’s why it means a lot to get these kinds of wins,” Svitolina said, according to the WTA. “In my own way, to bring this victory, small victory, to Ukraine.”



Unseeded Vondrousova will not want to be the loser in Svitolina's dream run, though. The Czech trails her head-to-head with Svitolina 2-3, but fought past fourth seed Jessica Pegula in three sets to reach only her second Grand Slam semifinal (she appeared in the 2019 Roland Garros final).

INSIGHTS has Vondrousova as a favorite to advance – 69% – and also gives Svitolina only an 8% chance of winning her maiden Grand Slam title.



(2) Aryna Sabalenka (13.13) vs. (6) Ons Jabeur (12.72)

Sabalenka looked to be in a tricky tangle in her Wimbledon quarterfinal on Wednesday against big-hitting American Madison Keys as she trailed 4-2 in the second set. But, as Sabalenka has done for most of 2023, the Australian Open champion roared past the 25th-seeded Keys 6-2, 6-4 to make her second Wimbledon semifinal.

On Thursday, she’ll face Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur for a place in her second major championship title match. Sabalenka was in a much different place one year ago when the Belarusian wasn’t allowed to compete at Wimbledon.



“I was really sad, but at the same time I was thinking that, 'OK, it’s a good time to kind of like reset and start everything over again,"' she said, according to the WTA. "I was struggling a lot with my serve, with these emotions, with a lot of stuff. I just took that time as a good preparation, as a good little switch.

“I did really good work, and it helped me at the US Open. Then I started believing in myself more, I start playing better, I start feeling better on court. Emotionally, I start feeling better. I think this period gave me so much belief in myself.”

Jabeur clinched her second Wimbledon semifinal by avenging her 2022 Wimbledon final defeat against Elena Rybakina, 6-7(5), 6-4, 6-1. Sabalenka leads their head-to-head series 3-1, including a straight-sets victory in the 2021 Wimbledon quarterfinals.



“I believe last year maybe I wasn’t ready to play this kind of match,” Jabeur said, according to the WTA. “I don’t regret last year. It happened for a reason. I always say it. I have learned a lot from the final last year. Definitely very proud of myself for the improvement that I did mentally, physically and with the tennis racquet.”

Jabeur is looking to become the first woman to make back-to-back Wimbledon finals since Serena Williams in 2019. INSIGHTS, however, favors Sabalenka at 72% and gives the Belarusian a 31% chance to take home her second Grand Slam title of the year.

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