CINCINNATI -- Ons Jabeur wears her heart on her sleeve. So as she addressed reporters at her first Media Day at the Western & Southern Open since losing to Marketa Vondrousova in the Wimbledon final, the 28-year-old Tunisian could not hide the disappointment that still lingers four weeks on.
"I had to take a few days -- a lot of days off -- to recover and still, it was not enough," Jabeur said in Cincinnati, where she is the seeded No.5 in the draw. "I wasn't feeling ready to play Montreal because that loss was kind of tough for me. So I tried to stay home, be with my family.
"I tried to reflect a bit on the final, but for now, I've got to be honest, it's still tough to think about it again."
As she prepares for her first tournament since Wimbledon, Jabeur hopes that a return to her competitive routines will accelerate the healing process. That certainly was the case last year after she lost her first major final to Elena Rybakina at Wimbledon. Jabeur bounced back to make the US Open final.
"I need to get back to tour and be able to move on," Jabeur said, "and the best thing is just to play tournaments, just to focus on what I'm doing and what I want to do.
"Definitely not giving up. That's something that I'm very sure about it, that I'm going to give my best. Every time I step on the tennis court it's going to be 100 percent."
Jabeur says she was overwhelmed by the positive outreach throughout the sporting community after her Wimbledon loss. But one message that left her in tears came from Andy Roddick.
The American could easily put himself in Jabeur's shoes. He lost three Wimbledon finals to Roger Federer. In an essay, Roddick says he sent Jabeur a lengthy message last month.
"I have more faith in you winning Wimbledon than I ever had in myself winning Wimbledon," Roddick says he wrote. "Take a breath, take a minute, make sure you prepare, keep your fitness going.
"She's someone I really hope wins a Grand Slam title at some point."
Jabeur said she was shocked to get a message from her idol.
"I was crying, happy crying," she said. "I appreciate that he took the time to write a good long message. I'm definitely talking to him when I see him probably at the US Open."
For now, Jabeur is focused on doing everything in her power to optimize her chances of crossing that final barrier at the Slams, while also acknowledging the power of destiny.
"Rafa once said 'If, if, if, doesn't exist,'" Jabeur said. "So for me, 'if I did this, if I did that,' I'm not going to focus with that. I'm just focusing on what's happening right now.
"Again, if it doesn't happen at the US Open, I'm not going to be sad about it. I'm just going to keep trying. If it's going to work, then great, if not, then I believe that's my destiny. What's supposed to happen to me, it's something I cannot change.
"That's the beauty of it when you believe in it. As long as I'm doing my best, as long as I'm doing 100 percent, I think that's fair."
The key, Jabeur said, is to fearlessly forge ahead.
"I believe that I have the level to be a Grand Slam champion," Jabeur said. "I believe that I could be one of the greatest players. Everything takes time with me, unfortunately. Maybe it's a good thing. We never know.
"I'm just taking it one day at a time, trying to unlock things that maybe are too early for me to unlock, and maybe it's too early for me to know them yet. But I know that I'm going in the right way."