Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur reps Saudi fitness brand Kayanee at Australian Open

Tunisian tennis superstar Ons Jabeur has a new deal with a Saudi state fitness brand, according to reports and social media posts on Monday.Jabeur posted an Instagram story from Melbourne, Australia, on Monday. In her photo with Jordanian tennis player Abdullah Shelbayh, Jabeur is wearing a t-shirt made by Kayanee, a Riyadh-based fitness and wellness company for women. Jabeur is in Melbourne to compete in the upcoming Australian Open tennis tournament. Kayanee was established by the Saudi Public Investment Fund last August to expand Saudi Arabia’s fitness industry and is chaired by Saudi’s ambassador to the United States Princess Reema Bint Bandar. The company offers fitness and well-being products and services such as apparel, personal care and nutrition, the Saudi Press Agency reported at the time of the company’s launch.Jabeur was previously sponsored by Lotto Sport Italia.Why it matters: Jabeur is by far the most successful tennis player to come out of North Africa and the Arab world and is widely known throughout the region. She has inspired Arab girls and boys to take up tennis and her endorsement of Kayanee could boost the brand.Jabeur, currently ranked sixth in the world, is chasing her first victory at a major tennis tournament. Jabeur lost the Wimbledon final last year and in 2022, as well as the US Open final in 2022.https://publish.twitter.com/oembed?url=https://twitter.com/melanie_lautrup/status/1744372893495013756/photo/1This year’s Australian Open will begin on Jan. 13. Jabeur lost in the second round last year.A documentary about Jabeur entitled “This Is Me” was released on Sunday. Jabeur reflected on her devastating Wimbledon loss in the film, saying that she put her plans to have a child on hold following the tournament.Jabeur, 29, has shown a willingness to work with Saudi Arabia before. She played an exhibition match in Riyadh in December, the first women’s tennis match in the country. In July, Jabeur said “I’m 100% there” when asked about possible Saudi investment in professional tennis. At the time, there was speculation that Saudi Arabia might host the Women’s Tennis Association Finals, but the season-ending tournament ultimately took place in Mexico in November. However, the Association of Tennis Professionals, which governs the men’s game, awarded the kingdom the Next Gen Finals for men’s tennis players 21 and younger last year.  The kingdom hosted the tournament for the first time in Jeddah in December, and the Red Sea city will host the Next Gen Finals through 2027.The Athletic reported in November that Saudi investment funds were seeking to buy either the Miami Open or the Madrid Open. Saudi Arabia, via the Public Investment Fund, is investing heavily in sports, including golf, mixed martial arts and soccer. The kingdom has been accused of using sports as a way to distract from its human rights record.Know more: Last year, the Saudi Public Investment Fund’s LIV Golf league announced a merger deal with the PGA Tour. However, the two have yet to finalize the arrangement and its Dec. 31 deadline has passed. The deal has been extended into 2024, according to multiple reports.


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