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Major League Pickleball

Some Recognizable Names Drafted in Season 2 of Major League Pickleball Australia

by Erik Tice on

MLP Australia held its Season 2 Draft on July 4th. The first season was three events, with the Northern Crocs winning the first two as well as the most points. 

The second season is also three events:

  • August 29 - September 1 - Gold Coast, Australia
  • October 17 - October 20 - Vietnam, Asia
  • November 7 - November 10 - Melbourne, Australia

There are 12 teams in MLP Australia:

*Captains are responsible for drafting their three teammates

How the draft worked:

Order of the draft:

The Player Pool was announced on June 30th.

We'll focus on the US-based players that were taken in the MLP Australia draft for Season 2.

From the rules laid out above, each team is allowed up to one "international" player. So theoretically, up to 12 players classified as "international" can play in MLP Australia Season 2. 

If you want to watch the recorded live draft, check out the MLP Australia's YouTube channel. Also, if you want a full recap of all the players drafted, check out MLP Australia IG account:

The nine US players drafted

Women

15th Pick - Eastern Rush - Jasmine Almaguer - From Riverside, California, Almaguer played tennis at UC-Riverside before making the switch to pickleball. She enjoyed some success at the APP Delray Beach earlier this year, winning some matches in singles and in mixed doubles.

21st Pick - Western Vipers - Shelby Bates - Bates brings a ton of experience from the APP Tour. She has three quarterfinal finishes on the APP Tour already this year in women’s doubles, with two top-10 finishes in mixed doubles. She brings consistency and firepower with her Down Under.

22nd Pick - Asia Aces -  Jamie Haas - Known more as a singles player, Haas has plenty of game. Haas doesn’t play as much as some of the other players on the PPA Tour, but she has made the Round of 16 in three out of the five tournaments she has played. The lefty brings plenty of athleticism.

24th Pick - New Zealand Hustle - Michelle Esquivel - Esquivel is a signed PPA Player and veteran of the game. She will immediately bring consistency and great defense. Esquivel also does a lot of commentating on the PPA Tour on Grandstand Court, so she may get to do more of that in Australia.

31st Pick - Sydney Smash - Xiao Yi Wang-Beckvall - Wang-Beckvall is based in Honolulu and attended Hawaii Pacific University, where she majored in Biology. She has competed in three professional tournaments, the latest of which was APP Punta Gorda back in January.

33rd Pick - Fast Fours - Liz Truluck - Liz Truluck was the steal of the draft in my opinion (at least of the US players). Liz is a PPA Tour signed player. She is a good women’s doubles player – making the Round of 16 five times – and has made the Round of 32 five times in 2024 in mixed doubles. She is also a top 20 female singles player, so she will be great in Dreambreakers.

How Liz Truluck and Ava Ignatowich Went from Davidson Tennis Standouts to Top 20 Pickleballers
Both Liz Truluck and Ana Ignatowich took their tennis skills to Davidson College and yet wound up elite women’s pickleball professionals. We document their journey to the PPA Tour.

Men

6th Pick - Brisbane Breakers - Kyle Yates - Kyle Yates is the best player in MLP Australia Season 2. He hasn’t been playing as much pro pickleball as of late, but he’s going to bring a lot of celebrity pickleball talent to Australia.

14th Pick - Gold Coast Glory - Roman Estareja - Estareja played in MLP Australia Season 1 and was the MVP of the last event in Brisbane. Estareja brings a good mental game and is a very good teammate.

17th Pick - South East Asia Surge - Marcel Chan - Chan trains in Hawaii with Phuc Huyhn (who was also picked up in the draft, but since he is from Vietnam, he was included as an Asian player, instead of international). Chan is also good friends and trains with Jaume Martinez Vich, who is a top level player in today’s game. Chan has quick hands and a tall frame along with athleticism.

23rd Pick - Melbourne Mavericks - Wesley Gabrielson - Gabrielson also played in MLP Australia Season 1. The lefty has a vast knowledge of the game and brings a calmness to any team he plays for. Great pickup.

29th Pick - Southern Stars - Daniel Moore - To be honest, I don’t know much about Moore. I believe he is a US citizen, but has lived in Japan for quite some time and plays and coaches there.

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Erik Tice

Erik Tice

Erik produces content for The Dink related to pro and collegiate pickleball. He is an avid watcher of pickleball and became passionate about the sport in early 2022.

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