Filipino tennis prodigy and Globe Ambassador Alex Eala continues her amazing run in Manacor after posting a three-set win over number 2 seed Mirjam Bjorklund of Sweden, 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 in the opening round of the Rafael Nadal Academy ITF World Tennis Tournament’s second leg in Mallorca, Spain.
Eala bucked a hiccup in the second set and proved steady in the final set to book a date against local bet Alba Carrillo in the next round.
Just like in the opening leg, Eala opened her campaign by registering another upset win this time against Bjorklund, who had a career best Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) ranking of 298.
The Filipino pride showed no fear against the older and more experienced Swede by taking the first set, 6-4, setting the tone for an upset win.
Bjorklund, who won at least six singles titles and one doubles crown in the International Tennis Federation (ITF) Women’s circuit, however, stormed back in the second round but could only delay the inevitable.
Eala jumped to a 2-0 lead in the deciding set. Bjorklund tried to cut Eala’s lead to 4-3. Eala, however, showed tremendous poise to close the match and completed the upset win against Bjorklund with an ace.
The 15-year-old Fillipina is the first player from the Philippines to win an ITF professional singles title since 2015 after beating veteran Spanish player Yvonne Cavalle-Reimers, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2 in the finals. She remains unbeaten in 2021.
A Globe Ambassador since 2013, Eala is also a scholar at the Rafa Nadal Academy. The Filipina is the number 3 junior player in the ITF and is currently ranked 1,190th in the world based on the January 25, 2021 singles ranking released by the Women’s Tennis Association. She is ranked 1,670th in the International Tennis Federation.