Alex Eala frustrates hometown ace to win first pro title in Spain

Published January 24, 2021, 8:51 PM

by Kristel Satumbaga-Villar

Photo from Rafa Nadal Academy

Junior teen sensation Alex Eala overcame an opening-set hiccup and bested Spain’s Yvonne Cavalle-Reimers, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2, for her first women’s pro title at the International Tennis Federation (ITF) W15 Manacor in Spain Sunday.

The victory came more than two hours for the 15-year-old PH bet, who also opened her season campaign with a bang after playing only five pro events since last year.

Eala recovered with her solid baseline game in the last two sets against the 28-year-old Cavalle-Reimers, who boasted of an ITF singles ranking of No. 132.

A junior reserve in this $15,000 tournament, Eala only dropped two sets throughout the event including her marathon 6-7(4), 7-6(4), 6-4 quarterfinal win over fifth seed Carole Monnet of France the other day.

Her earlier wins came at the expense of Italy’s Anna Paradisi in the first round, 6-1, 6-2; top seed  Seone Mendez of Australia in the second round, 6-4, 6-1; and Hong Kong’s Adithya Karunaratne in the semifinal, 6-3, 6-4.

With the win, Eala is expected to improve her ITF rankings of 1651.