Eala clinches singles, doubles Final Four seats

ABS-CBN Sports on Nov 23, 2018 03:07 PM
Eala clinches singles, doubles Final Four seats
Alex Eala advanced in the semifinals of the girls singles and doubles events.

Alex Eala continued to save the day for the Philippines as she crushed her Chinese foe to barge into the girls singles semifinals Friday in the Phinma-PSC International Junior Tennis Championships at Manila Polo Club.

The 13-year-old Eala, the Week 1 champion in singles, subdued Tian FangRan, 6-4, 7-5, to advance to the next round and stay in sight of her goal to win a third ITF singles crown this year.

The 15-year-old Tian, who upset second seed Saki Oyama of Japan in the second round, tried to impose her power play against the younger yet more versatile Filipina in the second set.

But the world 462nd Chinese, who has won an ITF juniors title in India recently, found no answer to Eala’s ground strokes on the soft clay courts.

The Filipina currently trains at Rafael Nadal Academy where Eala said they’re being taught on every surface depending on the tournaments up ahead.

She became the last remaining local campaigner after Nio Tria bowed to fourth seed Kokoro Isomura, 6-3, 6-1, in boys singles of the meet sponsored by Philippine Tennis Association, Philippine Sports Commission, Phinma Properties and Tecnifibre.

Eala is gunning for her second straight final appearance against 15-year-old, ranked 579th, Mei Hasegawa of Japan, who eliminated Dasha Plekhanova of Canada, 7-6 (0), 6-2.

Eala and Plekhanova reached the girls doubles semi-finals after a hard-fought 6-7 (2), 7-5, (10-2) victory over second seeds Oyama and Fang Wei-ning of Chinese Taipei.

They will go up against fourth seeds Kokomi Koyama and Erika Matsuda of Japan, 6-3, 6-3 victors over Hasegawa and Tsai Yu-chin of Chinese Taipei.

Tria paired with New Zealan’s Corban Crowther to beat Filipinos Norman Gaspar and Sebastien Lhuillier, 6-0, 6-2, and make the semis in boys doubles.

Facing them are Taiwanese Chen Yan-cheng and Lin Yen-hsun who ousted Majoli Maggioli of Thailand and Jerall Yasin of Indonesia, 7-5, 7-6 (6).

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