Tennis: Eala, Bassols cruise to W25 Palma del Rio doubles semis

Rosy Mina

Posted at Jun 30 2022 02:27 PM

2022 W60 Madrid champion Marina Bassols Ribera of Spain and runner-up Alex Eala of the Philippines. Photo courtesy of the Rafa Nadal Academy on Facebook.
2022 W60 Madrid champion Marina Bassols Ribera of Spain and runner-up Alex Eala of the Philippines. Photo courtesy of the Rafa Nadal Academy on Facebook.

No. 4 seeds Filipino Alex Eala and Spanish Marina Bassols Ribera moved on to the doubles semifinals of the W25 Palma del Rio with a straight-sets win in the quarterfinals, Wednesday in Spain. 

Eala and Bassols Ribera defeated Marta Huqi Gonzalez Encinas of Spain and Ashley Lahey of the United States, 6-1, 6-3, on the outdoor hard court of Polideportivo Municipal el Pandero.

The Filipino-Spanish duo quickly romped to a 5-1 edge, which was marked by love service holds in the fourth and sixth games.

They went on to break in the seventh game at 40-30 to take the first set, 6-1, then proceeded to clinch a 4-0 lead in the second set.

A break of serve in the sixth game allowed Eala and Bassols Ribera to serve for the match at 5-1, but Gonzalez Encinas and Lahey broke back courtesy of a double fault.

Gonzalez Encinas and Lahey leveled up to trail at 3-5, and Eala and Bassols Ribera responded to this with a determined service hold to win the match, 6-3.

In the semifinals on Thursday, the fourth-seeded Eala and Bassols Ribera will challenge No. 1 seeds Valeria Savinykh of Russia and Fanni Stollar of Hungary, who received a walkover in the quarters.

In the first round, Eala and Bassols Ribera overwhelmed Spaniards Adriana Cortes and Patricia Rodriguez Carretero, 6-0, 6-0.

More than a week ago, Bassols Ribera beat Eala to win the W60 Madrid title.

Meanwhile, in the singles draw of the $25,000 tournament, WTA World No. 337 Eala will play against No. 2 seed Jessika Ponchet of France in the second round also scheduled on Thursday. 

Eala, 17, overwhelmed Jimar Geraldine Gerald Gonzalez of Chile, 6-2, 6-0, in the first round.

The Filipino teen sensation has two professional titles under her belt: the 2021 W15 Manacor in Spain and 2022 W25 Chiang Rai in Thailand.

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