Photo: Martin Sidorjak
It has been a steady rise for Alexis Galarneau over the past few seasons. The 23-year-old Laval native not only earned his first Davis Cup nomination for Canada in March, but he also played his first match as part of the prestigious international team competition against the Netherlands.
He’s back on the team this week in Valencia with even more experience to draw from and he’s poised to take on a bigger role as someone who captain Frank Dancevic can call upon when needed for both singles and doubles.
Carving His Own Path
Like his Davis Cup teammate Gabriel Diallo, Galarneau opted for the NCAA route to better prepare himself for the rigours of the professional tennis circuit and the decision certainly paid dividends. He spent five years with the North Carolina State Wolf Pack, compiling a 65-36 record in singles and a 60-30 mark in doubles.
He’s been finding his way on the ITF World Tennis Tour and the ATP Challenger Tour on a full-time basis since the summer of 2021 and his results have been impressively consistent. This season, he has taken another step in his development and his game really came together this summer on Canadian soil during the North American hardcourt season.
In July, he reached his first ATP Challenger final at the Winnipeg National Bank Challenger, earning two top 200 victories along the way over Liam Broady and Tung-Lin Wu. He was rewarded for his breakthrough performance with a main draw wild card for the National Bank Open presented by Rogers in Montreal. Just as he had done a few months earlier against Botic van de Zandschulp in Davis Cup, Galarneau made quite a first impression during his Masters 1000 debut. He gave world no. 23 Grigor Dimitrov a tough opening round test and earned the admiration of his home fans in the process.
In Vancouver the following week, he opened with an upset win over world no. 54 Yoshihito Nishioka at the Odlum Brown VanOpen before pushing former world no. 7 Fernando Verdasco to three sets. His good string of recent results allowed him to reach a career-high ranking of no. 228 and within a few spots of making his maiden Grand Slam appearance in U.S. Open qualifying. Even though he just missed out on getting in the draw, Galarneau was still able to spend a few days on-site in Flushing Meadows, taking in the sites and sounds at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre. It’s an opportunity he didn’t take for granted.
All About Canadian Pride
Galarneau realized a childhood dream when he got the call to represent his country for the first time in March. These Davis Cup weeks are extra special for Galarneau because he’s playing for something bigger than himself. It’s an atmosphere that he thrives in because his passion and competitive spirit shine through. It’s an event that seems to bring out the best in him and that’s exactly what Team Canada is going to need to challenge their accomplished opposition in Group B.
Regardless of the result, if Galarneau is asked to play a match this week, he’ll leave it all on the court and inspire his compatriots to do the same. He’s a great teammate and a valuable member of the Canadian squad who’s proven over the past few months that he’s ready for his close-up.