Elena Rybakina breaks down in press conference after impressive Wimbledon triumph

Elena Rybakina broke down in tears during an emotional press conference after beating Ons Jabeur to be crowned Wimbledon champion.

Playing in her first Grand Slam final, Rybakina came from a set down to beat Ons Jabeur 3-6 6-2 6-2, becoming the first player to represent Kazakhstan and claim a Slam title. The Moscow-born star started the tournament seeded 17th, but produced the form of her life at SW19, beating Simona Halep in her semi-final before conquering Jabeur.

However, her parents weren’t there to watch her golden moment. The pair still live in Russia, meaning they are currently ineligible for a visa to travel to the UK amid the war in Ukraine.

And after being presented with the Venus Rosewater Dish on Centre Court, the 23-year-old was asked how her parents would react to her being crowned Wimbledon champion: “Probably they would be so proud,” she said, fighting back tears.

With Ryabinka clearly struggling, a member of her team said “Shall we wrap up there?” before the star herself managed a smile and said: “You wanted to see emotion?”

The comment broke the ice and prompted laughter from everyone in the room, before the world No 23 received a generous round of applause from the journalists present. And sure enough, fans on social media also praised the newest star of the women’s game.

Ryabinka was tearful in her post-match press conference

Ryabinka was tearful in her post-match press conference

“Well done Elena. Such a nice humble person,” tweeted @bernyboyo, while @Shruti_my_voice wrote: “You want to see emotions?? Awww.. the new Wimbledon champion all of 23 from Kazakhstan!

“The journey, the struggle..I admire these players and their parents for the sacrifices they have made.” @juanignacio_ac added: “Today I watched this at least 10 times. And I cried at least 10 times.”

Rybakina, who switched allegiances to Kazakhstan in 2018, is renowned for not celebrating victories and simply raised her right arm in the air when she won. Third seed Jabeur joked that she will have to teach the champion “how to celebrate properly.”

“Maybe one day you will see huge reaction from me, but unfortunately not today,” Rybakina had said earlier in her press conference. “I didn’t know what to do, it was shocking. It’s too many emotions. I was just trying to keep myself calm.

“When I was giving the speech I was thinking, I’m going to cry right now, but somehow I held it. Maybe later when I’m alone in the room, I’m going to cry non-stop. I don’t know.”

Despite her breakthrough win, Ryabinka will not be climbing the rankings anytime soon. Wimbledon was stripped of ranking points by the ATP and WTA in protest to its ban on players representing Russian and Belarus.

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