This paper presents the first analysis of spectroscopic and photometric observations of the neglected southern eclipsing binary star, QY Tel. Spectroscopic observations were carried out at the South African Astronomical Observatory in 2013. New radial velocity curves from this study and V light curves from the All Sky Automated Survey were solved simultaneously using modern light and radial velocity curve synthesis methods. The final model describes QY Tel as a detached binary star where both component stars fill at least half of their Roche limiting lobes. The masses and radii were found to be 1.32 (+/- 0.06) M-circle dot, 1.74 (+/- 0.15) R-circle dot and 1.44 (+/- 0.09) M-circle dot, 2.70 (+/- 0.16) R-circle dot for the primary and secondary components of the system, respectively. The distance to QY Tel was calculated as 365 (+/- 40) pc, taking into account interstellar extinction. The evolution case of QY Tel is also examined. Both components of the system are evolved main-sequence stars with an age of approximately 3.2 Gy, when compared to Geneva theoretical evolution models. (C) 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.