No.6 seed Ons Jabeur of Tunisia clinched a spot in the Chicago Fall Tennis Classic final after No.5 seed Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan retired from their semifinal due to GI illness while trailing 6-4, 3-2. Jabeur will face No.2 seed Garbiñe Muguruza of Spain in Sunday's final.

Despite advancing via retirement, the victory counts as Jabeur's 44th match-win of the season, which means she is the new WTA leader in 2021 wins. She moves ahead of World No.2 Aryna Sabalenka, who has won 43 matches this year.

Ons on fire: Jabeur is now one win away from her second title of the season and of her career. In the summer, she won on the grass courts of Birmingham, becoming the first Arab woman to claim a WTA singles title.

Jabeur's remarkable season continues as she currently sits at a career-high ranking of World No.16. She is also in 9th place in the Porsche Race to the WTA Finals, potentially making a push to qualify for the year-end championships in Guadalajara.

Deft dropshots and more by Jabeur: Chicago semifinal hot shots

Tale of the match: Jabeur took a quick lead, using well-struck, aggressive shots to break Rybakina at love for 2-1. The Tunisian went up a double-break after Rybakina hit two consecutive double faults to drop serve again and cede a 4-1 lead to Jabeur.

Deep returns by Rybakina allowed her to claw one break back at 4-2, but Jabeur’s delivery was not challenged again in the set, as she swept through her remaining service games to claim the one-set lead. Rybakina only got 39 percent of her first-serves into play in the set, in which Jabeur converted both of the break points she held.

Jabeur was tested at 2-1 in the second set, but Rybakina squandered two break points in that game with missed returns, and Jabeur held on. Subsequently, Jabeur broke at love to lead 3-2, finishing off that game with a deft dropshot-to-lob winner combo. After that, Rybakina called the trainer, and deemed herself unable to continue.

Muguruza makes final via walkover past ill Vondrousova

Earlier on Saturday, Olympic silver medalist Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic withdrew from the semifinals due to GI illness.

Her scheduled semifinal opponent, No.2 seed Garbiñe Muguruza of Spain, moves into the final via walkover. It marks the fourth singles final of the season for Muguruza: she won the title in Dubai after runner-up results at Doha and the Yarra Valley Classic in Melbourne.

Muguruza's semifinal win to get to that Yarra Valley Classic final came over Vondrousova: in the only meeting between the two, Muguruza dispatched Vondrousova in that clash, 6-1, 6-0.

Former World No.1 Muguruza is now a win away from her ninth career WTA singles title. The former World No.1 and two-time Grand Slam champion is currently also in contention for a coveted spot at the year-end WTA Finals in Guadalajara, sitting at No.8 in the Porsche Race.

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ons jabeur
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33.3% Win 1
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66.7% Win 2
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Muguruza and Jabeur have split their two previous meetings. Muguruza defeated Jabeur in the second round of Hobart in 2020, via a third-set tiebreak.

Jabeur got her revenge after another three-set tussle in the third round of Wimbledon earlier this year, en route to a quarterfinal showing.