MANILA, Philippines – Filipina tennis star Alex Eala bowed out of the 2023 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) Thailand Open after a much more experienced Tatja Maria of Germany cruised to a 6-2, 6-2 win at the True Arena in Hua Hin on Tuesday, January 31.
Maria, ranked No. 70 in the world, finished strong against Eala, currently ranked No. 217, and only needed one hour and 14 minutes to dispatch her foe, 18 years her junior.
The veteran Maria started off slow and went down 1-2 in the first set against Eala. However, Maria stayed composed and locked down the 17-year-old rising star with five straight game wins for the dominant 6-2 opening set cruise.
Eala again showed tenacity with a 1-1 tie in the second set, but her spirited rally was simply no match for Maria, who essentially put the match away with a four-game run for a 5-1 lead before finishing with a second straight 6-2 result.
Maria moves on to the Round of 16, while Eala heads home after another promising tournament.
On her way to the main draw, Eala bested world No. 240 Kristina Dmitruk of Belarus and another wily veteran in China’s Han Xinyun, ranked No. 84 in the world. – Rappler.com
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