ALEX M. Eala’s return to the prestigious Miami Open became a quick one after bowing to seasoned home bet Madison Brengle, 6-2, 6-1, in the first round at the Hard Rock Stadium late on Wednesday night.
Fifteen years younger than her American opponent, the 16-year-old Ms. Eala succumbed to an early 0-5 first-set deficit and never recovered from there en route to a swift defeat in a little over an hour.
Ms. Eala, the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) No. 565, managed to snatch only three games from WTA No. 59 Ms. Brengle, who was the Filipina ace’s highest-ranked opponent in her budding career.
Ms. Brengle will collide with Russian Luidmila Samsonova in the Round of 64.
For Ms. Eala, this was her second straight early exit in elite WTA 1000, 128-player event featuring the top women’s netters after an elimination in the qualifiers last year.
She earned a wild card berth straight into the main draw this year that paved the way for a tough collision with the 31-year-old Ms. Brengle.
Ms. Eala, also the ITF juniors No. 10, had played in six events this year with a pair of Round-of-16 finishes in France as her best performance so far. — John Bryan Ulanda