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Djokovic thrashes Murray in Open practice match

11 January, 2019, 00:50 | Author: Lula Armstrong
  • Kyle Edmund and Roger Federer

This year's edition of the season's opening Grand Slam in Melbourne Park begins Monday.

He will start his drive to make history against a yet-to-be-decided qualifier and could meet France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the second round.

"I'm so close, I'll give it a go, " Federer said.

Caroline Wozniacki, who won her first Grand Slam title in Melbourne past year after a tough final against Halep, is in the same section as Maria Sharapova and has Petra Kvitova at the top of her quarter.

Second seed Rafa Nadal, under an injury cloud after pulling out of the Brisbane International, will open against unseeded local James Duckworth.


The pair face a stern challenge from Zverev, the torch-bearer for the next generation who has so far failed to get beyond the quarter-finals at any major. Murray has struggled to regain form since undergoing hip surgery last January, and was quickly dismantled by the six-times Australian Open champion at Margaret Court Arena before the players called time on their match after less than an hour.

In the women's tournament, Serena Williams's bid for a record-equaling 24th Grand Slam title and eighth at Melbourne Park will kick off against German world No. 71 Tatjana Maria.

US Open champion Osaka opens against Poland's Magda Linette, and sees last year's upset artist and this year's No.28 seed Hsieh Su-wei, 2018 semifinalist and No.12 seed Elise Mertens and No.6 seed Elina Svitolina in her quarter.

Defending champion Wozniacki, who broke through for her maiden Grand Slam title with victory over Halep in last year's final, is in line to face former victor Maria Sharapova in a mouth-watering third round showdown.

Eurosport pundit John McEnroe sees the changing of the guard coming in 2019, saying: "I believe this year will be the year that you are going to see one of these young kids break through". Halep has drawn another first-round against Kaia Kanepi, who beat her at the same stage at last year's U.S. Open, and a possible third rounder against unseeded Venus Williams.

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