Alex Eala fell short on her bid of a third pro title after bowing to hometown bet Marina Bassols Ribera, 6-4, 7-5, in the W60 Madrid International Tennis Federation (ITF) tournament in Spain Sunday.
Eala, 17, couldn’t find the right combination to upset the 14th seed Ribera to settle for the runner-up honors.
It was still a big achievement for Eala despite the defeat as it was her best finish in a $60,000 tournament.
Even the Rafa Nadal Academy, where she has been a scholar for the past years, congratulated Eala’s feat.
“Congrats on your amazing week, Alex Eala!” the academy’s social media page wrote.
In her last $60,000 event in Grenoble, France last February, Eala had to undergo two qualifying matches before finishing in the second round.
Eala only dropped a single set prior to her finals loss. Her earlier wins came from Bulgaria’s Lia Karatancheva, 6-4, 6-4; Chile’s Daniela Seguel, 6-1, 6-2; Spain’s Yvonne Cavalles-Reimers, 0-6, 6-2, 7-5; Australia’s Jaimee Fourlis, 6-1, 6-4; and Canada’s Katherine Sebov, 6-2, 6-1.
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