Alex Eala outlasts Swiss foe in 1st round of ITF W25 Manacor tourney

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 3) – Filipino tennis sensation Alex Eala opened her International Tennis Federation W25 World Tennis Tour campaign with a 6-1, 6-4 victory against Switzerland's Simona Waltert on Wednesday in Manacor, Spain.

Entering her fifth pro tournament this year, Eala unleashed her experience in the first set with a flurry of points on serve to cap a dominant frame against Waltert.

In the second set, Waltert looked to turn things in her favor as she snatched an early 2-1 lead against Eala, thanks to some service points and double faults from the Filipino tennis ace.

Eala fought back to reclaim the lead, 3-2, but Waltert scored the next two straight sets to regain the driver's seat in the second frame.

The seventh game would be the last win for the 20-year-old Swiss as the 15-year-old Filipino notched some crucial points, notably a break point in the ninth game, to tally a 5-4 lead.

Eala closed out the match with a hard-earned win in the tenth game after Waltert forced two deuces as her last stand.

Eala will next face tournament third seed Jana Fett of Croatia in the second round. Fett is ranked world no. 210 in the Women's Tennis Association singles list.

The young Filipino tennis star continues her steady ascent in the professional tennis circuit as she is now ranked 763rd in the WTA world rankings, climbing 140 places since making her debut in the world's top 1,000 women players list last January.

She ruled the first leg of the ITF Women's World Tennis Tour W15 level competition for her maiden pro title and had three quarterfinal finishes from the last two legs of that tour and the ITF W25 Grenoble tournament in France.

Eala, training at the Rafael Nadal Academy in Spain managed by the 20-time Grand Slam champion, is also the third best female juniors' player in the world, according to the ITF.

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