Tennis

Upset-conscious Alex Eala targets first W60 pro title

Rappler.com
Upset-conscious Alex Eala targets first W60 pro title

FINALS-BOUND. Alex Eala celebrates another upset win.

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Alex Eala gets a chance to add a higher level pro circuit trophy to her collection as the Filipina teen seeks to become the rare unseeded tennis player to bag a championship

MANILA, Philippines – At just 17 years old, Alex Eala already has two International Tennis Federation (ITF) pro titles under her belt after she emerged champion in a W15 tournament in Manacor, Spain in 2021 and in a W25 event in Chiang Rai, Thailand last April. 

Eala will get a chance to add a more prestigious and higher level pro circuit trophy to her collection as the Filipina teen claimed a finals berth in the W60 Open ITF Arcadis Brezo Osuna in Madrid, Spain. 

Sustaining her hot run, Eala made short work of 16th seed Katherine Sebov of Canada, 6-2, 6-1, in the semifinal on Saturday, June 18, to arrange a title showdown against 14th seed home bet Marina Bassols Ribera. 

Eala, ranked world No. 413, has defeated seeded players in her last four matches and will seek to become that rare unseeded player to bag a championship.

Sebov, who had taken out the second and fifth seeds in the competition, proved no match to the powerful groundstrokes and steady service game of Eala, who was in the zone the entire match.  

The Filipina teen sensation broke Sebov five times in two sets. Eala never faced break point the entire match and converted 78% of her first serves and 91% of her second serves into points. 

So dominant was Eala in the semifinal that she had 56 total points, double the output of Sebov who only managed 28 points. 

The final match is set on Sunday, July 19 at 5 pm, Philippine time.

Aside from a home court advantage against Eala, Bassols Ribera  also had an impressive run thus far.

The Spaniard upset No. 6 Timea Babos of Hungary in the quarterfinal in straight sets, 7-6 (7-2), 6-2, and easily downed Adithya Karunaratne of Hongkong, 6-1, 6-3, in the semifinal. – Rappler.com