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    Alex Eala wins big in doubles pro debut with Russian partner

    May 19, 2021
    PHOTO: Rafa Nadal Academy

    FILIPINA teen tennis sensation Alex Eala is back in action, taking on her first women's pro doubles match in the International Tennis Federation (ITF) World Tennis Tour at W25 Platja D’Aro in Spain, on Tuesday night (Manila Time).

    The 15-year-old partnered with Russian Oksana Selekhmeteva, and the pair easily made their presence felt in the opener. In little under an hour, they made short work of Valeria Koussenkove from Spain and Warona Mdlulwa from South Africa, 6-2, 6-0.

    Both Eala and Selekhmeteva have already faced each other twice in their career.

    The pair took the first set in just 29 minutes, advancing to a 4-1 lead before their foes rallied back. Eala and Selekhmeteva ended the set with a decisive serve, and then breezed through the second in just 14 minutes, pulling off an easy match point.

    Advancing to the quarterfinals, round of eight, Eala and Selekhmeteva will next face tournament top-seeds Russian pair Vlada Koval and Sofya Lansere on Thursday.

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    Meanwhile, Eala, who’s turning 16 by the end of the month, is also competing in the singles main draw of the $25,000 tiff.

    In the opening round on Wednesday night, the juniors world no. 3 will take on 25-year-old Alba Carillo Marin, WTA no. 550, whom she already defeated twice in her pro career.

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    Looking to bag her second pro title, Alex also improved her WTA world rankings to no. 660 from no. 662, as she enters her 10th tournament this year.

    The 2020 Australian Open Doubles Juniors champion clinched her maiden pro title in the first leg of the W15 Manacor earlier this year.

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    PHOTO: Rafa Nadal Academy
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