MANILA, Philippines – Alex Eala breezed through two matches in the qualifiers to punch a ticket to the main draw of the RSF Pro Open at the Rancho Santa Fe Tennis Club in California, United States.
Eala blanked 22-year-old Alana Smith of the United States, 6-0, 6-0, on Tuesday, October 4 (Wednesday, October 5, Philippine time), just a day after the Filipina teen defeated another 22-year-old, Deniza Marcinkevica of Latvia, 6-1, 6-3.
The two impressive victories secured for Eala – the 2022 US Open girls singles champion – a berth in the main draw of the $80,000 ITF pro circuit event.
The 17-year-old Eala takes on American Dalayna Hewitt next in the opening round of the tournament featuring a top caliber field led by No. 1 seed Rebecca Peterson of Sweden, who was previously ranked 43rd in the world.
Peterson has reached the second round multiple times of the Australian Open, the French Open, and Wimbledon, and the third round of the US Open.
Other favorites include second seed Yuan Yue of China, who had a career-high 102 world ranking; and third seed American Katie Volynet, the world No. 113 who has played in the main draw of all four Grand Slam events.
Eala will be looking for a better result in Santa Fe after she fell in the second round of the previous week’s W60 Templeton also in California.
Over in Tay Ninh, Philippine team veteran Francis Casey Alcantara teamed up with the host country’s top player, Nam Hoang Ly, to prevail in straights sets over Italy’s Tommaso Compagnucci and Thailand’s Congsup Congcar, 6-4, 6-4, in the first round of the doubles competition of ITF M25 Hai Dang Cup in Vietnam.
Alcantara and Nam last partnered in June when they won an ITF M15 doubles event also in Tay Ninh.
Seeded first in this week’s competition, Alcantara and Nam will await in the quarterfinals the winner of the opening round encounter between Tomohiro Masabayasahi of Japan and Coleman Wong of Hong Kong versus hometown bets Quoc-Khanh Le and Dac Tien Nguyen.
Alcantara is fresh off a big win in Vietnam after he and Pruchya Isaro of Thailand emerged champion of the M25 Tay Ninh last Saturday.
It was Alcantara’s third doubles title win for the year in the international pro circuit. – Rappler.com