Alex Eala excited over prospects of making Australian Open main draw
MANILA, Philippines–Being in the Australian Open is nothing new to Alex Eala.
“Of course, I have fond memories of Melbourne and the Australian Open as this is where I won my first Junior Grand Slam title—in the girls’ doubles alongside Priska Nugroho of Indonesia in 2020,” the Filipino teenager wrote in a blog post on the International Tennis Federation website that was published Jan 6.
“But coming here as a professional is not the same as coming here as a junior. I am just as excited, but this is a new journey for me. Unlike juniors, I am not one of the top-seeded players anymore and if I am going to feature in the main draw, I will have to fight.”
Eala is in Australia hoping to work her way to the main draw of tennis’ first Grand Slam event, the Australian Open, and in her blog post, she said she is excited at the prospect of testing herself against the world’s best.
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“Undoubtedly, it will be very difficult, but if I was to win three matches and navigate next week, playing in the main draw of the Australian Open would mean so much to me,” Eala wrote. “To get to that level means you are among the world’s best players, and if you emerge through qualifying it means you have really earned that chance. From there, you could be drawn against anyone, maybe even the world No. 1.”
Eala wrote about looking forward to reaping the fruits of her offseason work.
“There was a significant focus upon my fitness during this period and I did a lot of aerobic exercises, while towards the end we concentrated more on specific training, points and technique. I feel in good shape,” she said.
While she will be campaigning as an underdog both in the qualifiers and if she makes the main draw, Eala said she is ready.
“I have already played my first tournament this season, at W60 Canberra, where I reached the second round of qualifying. I expected the level to be high given we are building towards the Australian Open and I felt I played two good matches.”