INDIAN WELLS, Calif. -- Marketa Vondrousova tallied her second win this season against No.4 Ons Jabeur, defeating the Tunisian star 7-6(5), 6-4 in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open. A finalist at Roland Garros in 2019, Vondrousova has now advanced to the Round of 16 or better in four of her five appearances at Indian Wells.
Now ranked No.105 after undergoing wrist surgery last season, Vondrousova next faces her compatriot Karolina Muchova. Muchova held off Italy's Martina Trevisan 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 earlier in the day to advance to the Round of 16 in her tournament debut. Vondrousova holds a 2-0 lead in the head-to-head, but this will be their first meeting since 2018 Stuttgart.
Having defeated Jabeur in the second round of the Australian Open in January, Vondrousova has now leveled their head-to-head to 3-3. The 23-year-old has not lost a set en route to the fourth round, tallying a 6-2, 6-2 win over Rebecca Marino in the first round, a 6-1, 6-1 win over 28th seed Maria Bouzkova in the second round and closing out Jabeur in straight sets on Monday.
Taking advantage of the slow and windy conditions, Vondrousova recovered from an early 3-0 deficit to storm back and take control of the match. Vondrousova unleashed her contained courtcraft to frustrate Jabeur from the baseline and elicit 37 unforced errors from the Tunisian's racquet. After taking the opening set in a tiebreak, Vondrousova built a 5-1 lead in the second set before Jabeur threatened a comeback.
"She played amazing from the start," Vondrousova said. "I just told myself to hold on. I just kept fighting."
From 5-1 down, Jabeur won three consecutive games and saved five match points before Vondrousova finally closed out the win after 1 hour and 31 minutes. While Vondrousova has enjoyed consistent success in the California desert, her run this week builds on her encouraging start to the 2023 season. On Tuesday she will try to make her third quarterfinal of the nascent season, having already done so at Adelaide and Lyon.
Jabeur earned her first win since the Australian Open in the second round on Saturday, defeating Magdalena Frech in three sets. The 28-year-old skipped the Middle East swing in February after undergoing knee surgery but told reporters after her opening win that while she may have returned to competition too soon, she has embraced the challenge of finishing the spring hard-court season in Indian Wells and Miami.