Alex Eala arrives in Melbourne ahead of Australian Open qualifiers
MANILA, Philippines — Alex Eala braces for her first women’s Grand Slam stint as she makes her first Australian Open appearance as a pro in the qualifying round starting next week.
The 17-year-old Filipino took to Facebook to share that she already finished her first training on Thursday morning in Melbourne.
“Arrived in Melbourne last night and got my first practice this morning. Good to be back after three years,” Eala wrote.
Eala, currently Women’s Tennis Association’s World No. 215, will try to reach the main draw of her first professional Grand Slam stint.
The Rafael Nadal Academy scholar became the country’s first singles Grand Slam champion after ruling the 2022 US Open girls’ tournament.
Arrived in Melbourne last night and got my first practice this morning. 💪🏼 Good to be back after 3 years.
She also won two junior Grand Slam doubles championships in the Australian Open three years ago with Indonesian partner Priska Nugroho and the 2021 French Open with Russian partner Oksan Selekhmeteva.
Three days ago, Eala competed in the W60 Canberra but she missed the main draw after losing to Selekhmeteva, 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, in the second round of qualifiers.
She opened the qualifiers on a high note, beating the No. 16 seed Marcela Zacarias of Mexico, 6-3, 7-6(0), on Sunday before losing to her former doubles partner.
Eala has been competing in professional circuit tournaments, where she won two titles in the 2021 W15 Manacor and W25 Chiang Rai last April.