Rafael Nadal Academy's Alex Eala secures spot in 2023 Australian Open women's qualifiers

Alex Eala at the 2021 Miami Open and Rafael Nadal at his namesake academy.
Alex Eala at the 2021 Miami Open and Rafael Nadal at his namesake academy.

Alex Eala, one of the star performers from the famed Rafael Nadal Tennis Academy, is all set to make her senior debut at the Grand Slam stage after securing a spot in qualification rounds for the 2023 Australian Open.

Eala recently took to social media to express her pleasure at the most recent achievement, announcing that she will be making her pro-level Grand Slam debut after having made the ranking cut-off list.

"Yes! I made the cut for the Qualifying Rounds of the Australian Open 2023 in Melbourne. This will be my first match ever in the pro-level of a Grand Slam," Eala wrote on her social media account.

The youngster, despite never having played in a senior Grand Slam event, is no stranger to the big stage. She recently scripted history by winning the 2022 US Open Girls' title — becoming the first player from her country to accomplish the feat. She had defeated the No. 2 seed from the Czech Republic, Lucie Havlickova in a 6–2, 6–4 final.

In addition, Eala also has two junior doubles Grand Slam titles to her name, having triumphed at the 2020 Australian Open and 2021 French Open with different partners. Needless to say, she will step out on the Melbourne courts with some fond memories to look back at.

The 17-year-old has been a student of the Rafa Nadal Academy, based in Mallorca, Spain, since the age of 12. She is one of the facility's many new faces to have emerged as next-gen stars of the sport.

Alec Eala joins fellow Rafael Nadal Academy's Casper Ruud in Melbourne

Alex Eala at the 2021 Miami Open.
Alex Eala at the 2021 Miami Open.

Rafael Nadal owns and trains at the namesake sports Centre in his hometown of Manacor, Mallorca. The center also houses the Rafa Nadal Tennis Academy, where Eala has been training for the past five years.

The Filipino, however, is not the first from the academy to have made waves on the tour. She joins the likes of Norway's Casper Ruud and Spain's Jaume Munar — both fellow trainees at the Rafael Nadal Academy — as entrants for the season's opening Grand Slam in Melbourne.

While both Ruud and Munar are assured of a direct entry into the main draw of the tournament, Eala will have to slug it out in the qualification rounds. The 2023 Australian Open is scheduled to take place between January 16-29, with qualification rounds taking place earlier.

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Edited by Anirudh
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