Eala crushes Finnish foe, barges into main draw of W100 Tokyo

Alex Eala blasted Finnish rival Anastasia Kulikova, 6-3, 6-3, to barge into the main draw round of the W100 Tokyo International Tennis Federation (ITF) tournament in Japan on Monday, Sept. 4.

The 18-year-old Eala took advantage of Kulikova’s strong yet erratic serves to resume her bid of a fifth pro singles title.

The Filipina was coming off a 6-4, 6-2 victory over hometown bet Kanako Morisaki in the first qualifying round.

Eala’s first main draw assignment has yet to be determined but the Rafa Nadal Academy alumna is expecting a tough competition.

World No. 81 Nao Hibino of Japan banners the field as she seeks her 13th ITF crown and third this year.

Also battling the tournament are second seed Jule Niemeier of Germany, third seed Wang Xiyu and No. 4 Yue Yuan of China, and Australian fifth pick Kimberly Birrell.

Currently at her career-high No. 195, Eala aims for her first title in a $100,000 event.


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