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Eala, Kawaguchi stay alive in doubles

After blowing her chance at the singles crown, Alex Eala remained in contention in doubles play of the W100 Tokyo event after she and local netter Natsumi Kawaguchi beat the Georgian tandem of Sofya Lansere and Natela Dzalamidze Thursday afternoon at the Ariake Tennis Center in Tokyo.

Eala and Kawaguchi got the job done in one hour and 23 minutes, 4-6, 6-3, 12-10, to make the grade for a quarterfinal seat.

Before downing the Georgian duo, Eala and Kawaguchi dumped the Thai partnership of Luksika Khumkum and Peangtarn Pilpuech, 6-4, 7-6, in the round-of-16.

Last Wednesday, Eala’s bid to win her fifth singles crown was quashed after being dealt a 4-6, 7-6, 6-2 defeat by Australian Kimberly Birrell.

A graduate of the Rafael Nadal tennis Academy in Mallorca, Spain, Eala is using the Tokyo netfest as part of her preparation for her much-awaited stint in the 19th Asian Games taking place next month in Hangzhou, China.

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