Eala battles for QF berth in Swiss tourney | Inquirer Sports

Eala battles for QF berth in Swiss tourney

/ 05:10 AM April 09, 2021

alex eala

FILE – Filipino tennis player Alex Eala. Photo from Rafael Nadal Academy

Alex Eala made sure that age—and world ranking—wouldn’t matter on Wednesday.

Now she is out to make sure hometown advantage won’t, too.

The country’s brightest light in tennis guns for a place in the quarterfinal (QF) of the W60 Bellinzona on Thursday in Switzerland, (10 p.m. in Manila) but standing in the way is Swiss Simona Waltert.


Their head-to-head is 1-1, with Eala beating Waltert in the W25 Manacor (6-1, 6-4) and the latter getting back at the Filipino ace (6-4, 2-6, 7-5) in W15 Manacor both played in Mallorca, Spain, last month.

Her team is not putting unnecessary pressure on her but hoped that the 15-year-old world No. 715 gets to pick up enough experience in the clay tournament.

It was so far, so good for Eala on Wednesday as she disposed of 32-year-old world No. 206 Laura-Ioana Parr of France, 6-7 (6), 6-1, 6-0, in the second round.

The left-handed Eala displayed grittiness beyond her years as she fought off frustration of losing the opening set where she blew a 3-1 lead.


Eala saw the veteran coming back to take the lead down the stretch, forcing the Filipino to scramble for tiebreak. After a back-and-forth, Paar broke serve and held to take set.

But while the effort appeared to have worn down the French, the Filipino was just warming up, exploding in the next two sets to nail the victory.


Waltert, the world No. 284 at 20 years old, advanced after pulling off a 3-6, 7-6 (4), 6-4 upset over second seed Antonia Lottner of Germany.

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TAGS: Alex Eala, Tennis, W60 Bellinzona

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