Grade A (オールA Ōru A) is the 54th chapter of manga, Baby Steps.

Characters in Order of AppearanceEdit


Nabae aims to become a Grade-A tennis player, someone who is the best in every aspect of tennis.


Nabae wonders why Eiichiro is passionate in his observing matches even though he is not participating in the tournament. Takuma tells everyone that Eiichiro is aiming to become a pro, surprising Eiichiro as he did not expect Takuma to know such fact. Nabae invites Eiichiro to accompany him in observing other seeded players.

From Nabae's perspective, Eiichiro learns information about Takahashi and Azusa. They also trade information about Takuma, which for Nabae, Takuma is most likely the winner of All-Japan Junior Tournament if he really makes a comeback. Eiichiro is surprised to see that Nabae has a table consists of data of their abilities, in order for Nabae to challenge the areas where those players are weak at.

Nabae then asks Eiichiro about his concept of being strong at tennis. For Nabae, one should not compromise any ability in tennis because the opponent will take advantage of one's weakness to take him down. From this point of view, Nabae wants to become a Grade-A athlete.

Eiichiro observes Nabae's match in order to know more about one who aims to become a Grade-A athlete. Nabae's tennis style looks normal but Eiichiro realizes that Nabae is forcing his opponent to miss. He is also difficult to read because his expression does not change.

Eiichiro also learns that Oobayashi and Miyagawa lost in their first match. A week later, Eiichiro learns through Yukichi that Takuma lost in the finals match against Nabae. These become his motivation in order to work harder in his training menu.