FILIPINO tennis ace Alexandra “Alex” Eala begins her bid to make the 2023 Australian Open women's main draw on Monday at the Melbourne Park.Ranked 215th in the Women's Tennis Association, Eala shared she's ready to battle 85th ranked and 31-year-old Japanese Misaki Doi in the first round of the qualifiers.
The 17-year-old Eala said she felt she played two good matches at the W60 Canberra to start the year and her five-week training buildup for the Australian Open qualifiers had been solid.”I feel 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,” said Eala in the ITF website.”This follows a productive off-season, which felt quite long but was very effective and my team and I did everything we planned to, executing everything really well. I was so happy with how my team constructed those five weeks.”This is Eala's first try in the women's division of a Grand Slam tournament after stamping her class in the girls division in the past few years.Eala won the 2020 Australian Open and the 2021 French Open doubles events as well as the 2022 US Open Girls tournament last September.”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,” shared Eala.”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 needs to win thrice (three rounds of qualifiers) to advance to the main draw of the Australian Open.
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