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Eala begins W25 Roehampton with back-to-back wins

August 11 ------ Alex Eala marched into the singles second round and doubles quarterfinals of the W25 Roehampton in Great Britain by posting straight-sets victories.

This made the three-time ITF women’s singles champion remark in a Facebook post, “Great start to my first tournament in the UK this year!” The 18-year-old sixth seed from the Philippines won her first match against Australian qualifier Gabriella Da Silva Fick, 6-3, 6-4, at the National Tennis Centre of the Lawn Tennis Association. WTA World No. 250 Eala quickly held serve for a 3-2 lead, then secured the first break point conversion of the match for 4-2 after her opponent committed a double fault.

The Filipino saw off four deuces to be at 5-2, and the Australian World No. 781 fought back with a service hold to narrow the gap to 5-3. Eala claimed the first set, 6-3, with a love service hold that was sealed with an ace down the T. At 2-2 in the second set, the 22-year-old Da Silva Fick saved a break point and overcame four deuces to hold serve. Eala proceeded to tie the score, 3-3, with a service hold at 40-30. They each held serve again to level at 4-4, until Eala came back from 15-40 in the ninth game and broke for the third time in the match to serve for the win at 5-4.

With two match points in place courtesy of a forehand winner, Eala triumphed at 40-15 after Da Silva Fick netted a backhand, 6-4. With 71 total points won, Eala fired four aces and limited her double faults to just one. Da Silva Fick, meanwhile, had 59 total points won, four aces, and four double faults. Eala, the reigning US Open Juniors singles winner, is slated to face doubles partner Destanee Aiava of Australia in the second round on Thursday.

Eala and Aiava were victorious in their opener against Julie Belgraver of France and Ella McDonald of Great Britain, 7-5, 6-2. The Filipino-Australian duo won a total of 61 points and tallied one ace and a single double fault, while the French-British pair had 46 total points won, three aces, and four double faults.

In the quarterfinals also on Thursday, Eala and Aiava will seek to upset No. 1 seeds Talia Gibson and Petra Hule of Australia. Last week, Eala made an exit from the W60 Barcelona in Spain with a singles quarterfinal result and doubles opening-round finish.



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