Djokovic Back, Set for Australian Open

"I think the fact they took so much time off has kind of changed the way people think about how to approach their tennis".

Given the current number of injuries on the men's tour, maybe she has a point. For the women's title, I am going to pick the French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko, who wowed tennis fans with her aggressive style that led to her fairy tale victory in Paris. Also participating in the Tie Break Tens is world No. 1 Rafael Nadal. He won 70 of his 76 matches and even went 41 matches without a defeat. The Next Gen has been knocking on the door for a while, but will this year be finally when they breakthrough?

"In fairness to Maria, the adjudication has occurred on that", Tiley said of her suspension.

Federer will face world number 51 Aljaz Bedene in the opening round, while Kyrgios goes up against Brazilian Rogerio Dutra Silva. His opponents in finals were on average ranked 5.75. The 2018 Australian Open may provide some answers. This actually could be a bit of a statistical exaggeration because a player's rise is gradual and steady and not a series of ups and downs.

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But Djokovic didn't just elevate his own game.

It was an unpleasant surprise and a reminder that - without Murray, who is convalescing in Melbourne after hip surgery - the British ranks are painfully lacking in depth. At the Australian Open, the Romanian is the top seed at a Slam for the first time in her career.

And when Djokovic made grass - a surface which Andre Agassi called "ice slathered with Vaseline" - feel like clay, leaving not a single blade uncovered, Federer was left with no choice but to shore up his defence. The most recent match was last year in Nottingham, a match he won in straight sets. But so did Federer. Additional watch-ability, for one.

A rematch of last year's Australian Open semifinal with 2017's strongest finisher, Grigor Dimitrov, is on the cards.

Nadal and Wawrinka boost for Australian Open
The Australian Open is thus a chance for the younger generation to get ahead and grab the proverbial bull by the horns. He has reached at least the semi-final stage in 13 of the last 14 Australian Opens (2015 being the exception).

Their replacement - a 'lucky loser' from the qualifying tournament - will get the other 50 percent of the first-round prize money.

Muguruza could get 2016 champion Angelique Kerber, or Sharapova or 14th-seeded Anastasija Sevastova in the fourth round, before a possible quarter-final against Garcia. Young has been an afterthought the last couple of years, but he is a talented player capable of putting up a fight.

It is impossible to ignore the sense of confusion and suffering that has pervaded the tournament.

"When you play a match it's different to practice". Young has been one of those players who has struggled to reach his full potential, but he has shown flashes of it throughout his career and can be a dangerous player when he's hitting his spots and playing with confidence.

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It's remarkable that a 36-year-old is the pre-tournament favourite at a Major.

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