But it was Bencic who regained her form to open a 3-1 lead. Jabeur had one last rally, squaring the set at three-all with her final break of Bencic’s serve.
That’s when Bencic’s smooth ground strokes and near-perfect placement wore down Jabeur. Bencic took control for good after Jabeur sent a shot long to go up 4-3. Bencic won the final game at love, dropping to her knees and covering her face in celebration after Jabeur’s forehand sailed over the baseline.
“It’s so cozy here,” Bencic told the crowd at the trophy presentation. “You always make this such a family event.”
Bencic, seeded 10th, looked like she’d have an easy time with Jabeur, from Tunisia, who she broke twice on the way to taking the opening set. But Jabeur, the fourth seed ranked 10th in the world, cut down on the unforced errors and drew on the energy of the crowd, who applauded almost every move the dynamic 27-year-old made much of the week.
“I feel like is is the tournament that you breakthrough and then it goes the right way,” she said. “So I’m happy about it.”
Bencic, of Switzerland, reached the semifinals here in her first visit in 2014 and hadn’t advanced that far until this year. She earned $158,000 for winning the season’s opening clay-court tournament.metasports
Belinda Bencic won three of the last four games to outlast Ons Jabeur 6-1, 5-7, 6-4 and win the Credit One Charleston Open for her first clay-court championship. Bencic won her sixth career WTA title and first since the Tokyo Olympic.