Tennis

Alex Eala up for Australian Open challenge: ‘I will have to fight’

Delfin Dioquino
Alex Eala up for Australian Open challenge: ‘I will have to fight’

HARD AT WORK. Alex Eala hopes that the work she put in during the offseason will pay dividends.

Alex Eala's Instagram page

Alex Eala eyes a coveted spot in the main draw of the Australian Open as she sees action in the qualifying rounds

MANILA, Philippines – Alex Eala is well aware of the uphill climb she has to overcome in her maiden pro-level Grand Slam tournament.

The 17-year-old tennis star eyes a coveted spot in the main draw of the Australian Open as she sees action in the qualifying rounds in Melbourne starting on Monday, January 9.

Eala needs to go pick up three straight wins to advance in the event where she won her first-ever junior Grand Slam title in 2020, teaming up with Indonesian partner Priska Nugroho to capture the girls’ doubles crown.

This time, though, she is alone and set to face tougher and more experienced opponents.

“Unlike [the] 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,” said Eala in her ITF blog.

But Eala believes she is up for the challenge, hoping that the work she put in during the offseason will pay dividends.

Eala is also satisfied with her performance in her first tournament of the year despite bowing out of the second round in the qualifying draw of the W60 Canberra in Australia.

“There was a significant focus on 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,” she said.

“I feel in good shape.”

Eala said it would mean the world to her to reach the main draw.

“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,” Eala said.

“From there, you could be drawn against anyone, maybe even the world No. 1.” – Rappler.com

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.