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Eala stays at No. 214

Alex Eala retained her spot in the Women’s Tennis Association ranking despite an early exit in the qualifying round of the 2023 Australian Open.

The 17-year-old Filipina tennis sensation maintained her spot at No. 214 despite bombing out early following a 6-4, 6-7, 3-6 loss to Misaki Doi of Japan in the women’s singles qualifying round at Melbourne Park last week.

Iga Swiatek of Poland remains at No. 1 heading into the first round of the blue-ribbon Grand Slam event against Jule Niemeier of Germany.

Filipino-Canadian Leylah Fernandez, for her part, dropped to No. 40 in the WTA rankings before facing Alize Cornet of France in the first round of the Australian Open.

Eala next assignment will be the WTA 250 Thailand Open from 30 January to 5 February in Hua Hin, Thailand.

She said she needs to play in more professional matches if she wants to figure prominently in other Grand Slam events.

“My goal for this year is to get more integrated into the WTA Tour,” Eala said.

“We’re going to follow more or less the calendar and do the best I can to win the Slams. That’s my goal: To be more of a professional and develop my career.”

Rafael Nadal Academy coach Daniel Gomez wants the three-time junior Grand Slam winner to get aggressive in her game in the professional ranks.

“She has to be aggressive in her game. We are focusing on her moving as fast as she can in her shots and keep being as aggressive as she likes to be,” Gomez said.

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