“Helped Me A Lot”: Felix Auger-Aliassime Details How Toni Nadal Guided Him at Rafael Nadal Academy

Published 12/27/2020, 12:01 AM EST
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – APRIL 16: Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada plays a backhand against Juan Ignacio Londero of Argentina in their first round match during day 3 of the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters at Monte-Carlo Country Club on April 16, 2019 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)


The promising Canadian talent, Felix Auger-Aliassime, has been training at the Rafael Nadal Academy in Spain. In course of his training, he utilised the opportunity of learning tennis from Toni Nadal. The 20-year-old also feels that he can breach the Top 10 in the next season.

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Toni is the uncle and ex-coach of the 20-time Grand Slam champion Rafa Nadal. He had been training the Spaniard since 1990 and departed from the team in 2017. Before Novak Djokovic won the 2020 Australian Open – his 17 Grand Slam title with coach Marian Vajda – Toni had most major tournament titles as a coach (16).

He now works full-time at his nephew’s academy, training young tennis players. For the Canadian, it seemed like the perfect place to learn and to improve his game.

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Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates victory with the trophy alongside coach Toni Nadal after the men’s singles final against Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland on day fifteen of the French Open at Roland Garros on June 11, 2017, in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Felix spent more than a week at the Rafael Nadal Academy

Ranked 21 in the ATP rankings, the 20-year-old finished as a runner-up in 3 ATP events in 2020. His biggest win came at the Rolex Paris Masters where he lifted the doubles title with Hubert Hurkacz. To take his progress to the next level, the Canadian chose Rafa Nadal Academy to be his pre-season location.

Aliassime said, “It was my first time but I have been happily surprised by everything. It’s as good as I imagined, even better. I feel like everybody has really good energy here, a lot of respect, a lot of engagement and passion for the game everywhere around.”

The Canadian always wanted to learn from Toni but couldn’t find the opportunity before. Moving forward, Felix revealed that the experience and Toni’s feedbacks have been great for him.

“That’s one of the bigger reasons why I came here is to share some experience and have some knowledge from Toni, and here it’s been amazing. He’s helped me a lot so far, and he gives me great tips. I like his ethic and mentality,” said the Canadian.

2021 goals for Felix after training at Rafa Nadal Academy

Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada and Hubert Hurkacz of Poland during the doubles semifinal on day 6 of the Rolex Paris Masters, an ATP Masters 1000 tournament held behind closed doors at AccorHotels Arena formerly known as Paris Bercy on November 7, 2020, in Paris, France. (Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images)

Learning a lot from the Academy, Felix aims to improve and play good matches week after week. He believes that with engagement and intensity, he can attain his objectives.

“I want to keep on improving, I come here and train hard to reach other levels. Of course, I would love to be in the Top 10,” Felix said.

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The Canadian is one of the most promising prospects for tennis’ future. It will be a treat to watch the 20-year-old compete against top players in the world.

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Purav Joshi

674 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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