Latest 13 Oct 2023

Exciting young Canadian superstar set to grace the ASB Classic courts

by ASB Classic
Exciting young Canadian superstar set to grace the ASB Classic courts

One of the world’s most exciting rising young stars, French-Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime, has confirmed he will make his Auckland debut at the ASB Tennis Classic in January.

The 23-year-old reached a high of sixth in the world in 2022, in a stellar year that included four ATP titles, highlighted by bagging three in a row. His standout year included notable victories over Carlos Alcaraz and Novak Djokovic, each on two occasions, and Rafael Nadal.

At 18 in 2019, he became the youngest player to make the top-25 in the world since Lleyton Hewitt over two decades ago.

A significant highlight was guiding Canada to their first-ever victory in the Davis Cup final, with his unbeaten performance sealing their success over Australia.

“Last year was a great year for me and I reached some important milestones in my Titles, the Nitto ATP Finals and Davis Cup – really a full year to celebrate,” said Auger-Aliassime.

“I have heard a lot of good things about Auckland and New Zealand in general, like the beauty of the landscape and the country and how nice the people are as well. I am looking forward to seeing that and hopefully I can play well and win some matches in front of the fans.”

Auger-Aliassime’s father, who was born in Togo, is a tennis coach. The young Canadian maintains strong links to the impoverished Togo, donating US$5 for every point he wins, which he donates to EduChange, for the protection and education of children in the west African country.

“It is close to my heart. It is something I am very passionate about, helping others, giving back, even if it is a handful of people, but helping out in this way.”

Auger-Aliassime is also an accomplished musician who played piano at the ATP Players Party last year.

“My mum taught me to play the piano as a kid which was fun growing up. It is something I enjoy. My music tastes are wide from French-Canadian music growing up, French classics, American hip-hop and Canadian artists like Drake.”

On the tennis court, he has set lofty goals in the next 12 months.

“I look at the big picture. I want to win Grand Slams, be the best player that I can be and just keep improving.

“I try to think how I can be the best version of myself and if I do that, no matter what happens, I will be proud of myself because I will have given everything I have.”

ASB Classic tournament director, Nicolas Lamperin said attracting the Canadian star to Auckland is a major coup for the men’s competition that starts from 8 January 2024.

“Felix was among the most impressive players in world tennis last year and to have him play at the ASB Tennis Arena is such a massive boost for our tournament,” said Lamperin.

“He is one of the new stars of the world game, and he also matches what he does on the court as an outstanding young man in every respect off the court. I cannot speak more highly of him as a tennis player and as a person of high integrity.”