Potential semi final between Federer and Djokovic in the Australian Open

Annette Crawford
January 13, 2018

A few minutes later when the formalities were completed, Federer found out how hard defending his title could be after landing in the same half as six-time champion Novak Djokovic.

"The quarters, semis at best, because I would just run into a red-hot Djokovic or Murray or Nadal or somebody and my game wasn't going to be good enough for that day - and it was".

"The boys are young and one of them was watching me at the Hopman Cup last week and he said: 'I can do what Papa can, I can play tennis too'".

Whether or not she could have won a 24th slam, and her first as a mother and wife, is open to question considering her lack of match practice, although if any one could do it the 36-year-old would be the one.

Federer's big concern would be against del Potro in the quarters.

With Nadal and Federer now entrenched as top seeds, Djokovic, a six-time champion here, has the chance to prove spoiler in his first tournament since an elbow injury forced him out of Wimbledon.

Djokovic had a contrasting 2017, starting at No. 2 but losing in a second-round upset at the Australian Open and not playing again after Wimbledon. By contrast, Djokovic is returning from injury and hopes to avoid a repeat of last year's second-round defeat to Denis Istomin - his worst result since bowing out at the first hurdle in his first appearances in 2005 and 2006.


Top-ranked Nadal will open against Victor Estrella Burgos, has a potential fourth-round match against John Isner, and No. 3 Grigor Dimitrov in his half of the draw.

Federer displayed that freedom previous year and Wilander believes that fellow Swiss Wawrinka, who ended last season in August with a knee complaint, could arrive with a similar attitude this time around at Melbourne Park.

On the women's side, Serena Williams is not defending her title as she regains her fitness after childbirth, leaving the family interests in the hands of defending finalist Venus Williams.

Halep could face twice Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the third round and is in the same half as Muguruza who may have to get past Sharapova in round four.

Anderson, who had his best season past year after a long spell away tending a hip problem (the injury du jour on the circuit), beat Edmund in their only previous match, in the third round of the 2017 French Open.

He starts against a qualifier and could meet his Brisbane conqueror and home hopeful, 17th seed Nick Kyrgios, in the fourth round.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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