World no. 2 Alex Eala was another victim of the day of upsets in the juniors girls’ draw.
Dampened by the rain, the 16-year-old Filipino became the third and last seeded player to bow out of contention after she absorbed defeat from the unseeded Sebastianna Scilipoti, 5-7, 3-6, of Switzerland in the junior girls’ singles quarterfinals of the 2021 US Open at the USTA Billie Jean King Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, New York Friday (Manila time).
The double JA Milan champion was visibly shaken from her nonstop foray since the other day after she took three matches in just 28 hours. She even needed a medical timeout prior to the start of the eighth game of the second set.
Eala lost control of the match when Scilipoti took over the games that went down-the-wire, particularly that penultimate game. The Swiss eventually pocketed the rally despite the strong resistance from the opponent.
Eala took control of the match early on despite the number of unforced errors against her; and despite going down 1-3 against the Swiss opponent. Using her power at the baselines, Eala took control of her service game to take the pivotal 4-3 lead.
This aggressiveness, however, took its toll on Eala’s own game. Her miscues rose to as much as 28 at the end of the frame, giving freebies that helped the Swiss notch the set advantage.
Eala, nonetheless, is still not out of the competition. She will instead focus all her attention and well-deserved rest on the doubles battle.
That rain-postponed doubles quarterfinal will now take place on Saturday, 3:00 AM here in the Philippines. The Filipino and Belgium’s Hanne Vanderwinkel face USA’s Madison Sieg (Eala’s partner in that Milan title) and Elizabeth Coleman.