Croat foe sends Eala packing early in 25K Manacor tourney
Alex Eala
Rafa Nadal Academy

Croat foe sends Eala packing early in 25K Manacor tourney

Luisa Morales (Philstar.com) - March 4, 2021 - 10:25pm

MANILA, Philippines — Alex Eala suffered a second round exit in the ITF W25 Manacor event in Spain after losing a heartbreaker against Croatian tennister Jana Fett, 6-4, 3-6, 5-7, on Thursday.

Eala couldn't complete a comeback in the third set after tying the set 5-5 after trailing 3-5 in a match that lasted two hours and 57 minutes.

Fett, who is ranked 210 in the WTA, is seeded third in the event held at the Rafa Nadal Academy where Eala is a scholar.

Eala started the match strong with a gritty 6-4 win against the 24-year-old to open the contest.

But the Croat remained unfazed and took an early 2-0 advantage in the second set.

While Eala recovered to take back the lead in the second salvo, 3-2, four straight game wins for Fett forced the deciding third set.

Buoyed by her second set win, Fett started the third strong, going 3-0.

But the 15-year-old Eala didn't want to go down without a fight and knotted the set, 5-5. She even had to save a match point.

However, Eala dropped the next two games in heartbreak fashion to give the win to Fett.

This is Eala's worst finish this year in her five tournaments so far after at least a quarterfinals finish in all her prior outings this season.

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