Filipina tennis star Alex Eala moved on to the next round of the Wimbledon girls’ singles tournament as she defeated Solana Sierra of Argentina in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4 in the first round at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London on Monday evening (Philippine time).
The 16-year old, who is the second seed in this tournament, started her breakaway in the fourth game of the first set as she broke Sierra’s serve to move ahead, 3-1. She then dominated the fifth game and forced her opponent into a forehand error to take a 4-1 lead. Another break of Sierra’s serve put Eala up 5-1 but the former stayed alive by breaking the Filipina’s serve in the seventh game. Eala, though, kept her composure and broke the Argentinian’s serve one more time to end the first set, 6-2, in just 23 minutes.
In the second set, Eala asserted herself early and zoomed off to a 3-0 lead but Sierra fought back and pulled to 2-3, capping that win off with a forehand winner that ended a long rally in the fifth game. Eala retaliated by breaking Sierra’s serve in the very next game and holding her own in the seventh to take a 5-2 lead. Sierra, though, proved resilient as she won the next two games to creep to within 4-5. The tenth game was all Eala as she took a 40-0 lead and never looked back to win the second set, 6-4, the match and book her ticket in the next round.
Up next for the talented Filipina is 17-year old Spanish netter Ane Mintegi Del Olmo.
Eala is looking to win her very first singles title in a grand slam tournament. She already has two girls’ doubles grand slam championships, which she won at the 2020 Australian Open and just recently, at the 2021 French Open. (JNP)