At the ATP 250 tournament that takes place at Melbourne Park, fourth-seeded David Goffin will be given a bye in round one. He will be able to use that extra day of acclimatization because in round two Nick Krygios (ATP 93) or Alex Molcan (ATP 88) follows. The 31-year-old from Liège wants to recover after a difficult 2021 and, in his first tournament since the US Open four months ago, may aim for a semifinal against first seed Rafael Nadal (ATP 6).

The Belgian ladies stay in the same place and also start with a WTA 250 tournament. Elise Mertens is second seed in the Melbourne Summer Set 2 and is waiting for a qualifier. Greet Minnen (WTA 80) also gets a qualifier in round one, while Alison Van Uytvanck (WTA 58) has to deal with Amanda Anisimova (WTA 78). Maryna Zanevska (WTA 82) is the only compatriot to be divided in Melbourne Summer Set 1 and the former Ukrainian will take on Petra Martic (WTA 54). In case of a win, Zanevska can possibly compete with first seed Naomi Osaka (WTA 13). For the Japanese pupil of coach Wim Fissette, it is also her first appearance since the US Open at the beginning of September.

© AFP
© AFP

Djokovic spotted… in Marbella

Just fourteen days before the start of the Australian Open, there is still no trace of nine-time winner Novak Djokovic. The world number one has been spotted in Marbella, where he is working on his return to the track, but whether that will be in Australia remains to be seen. Djokovic has so far not wanted to reveal whether he has been vaccinated and let that be an obligation to participate in Melbourne. “We have a few more charter flights coming in until the end of the week,” said Australian Open boss Craig Tiley. “And then all the players will be here. We will get a clearer picture about Djokovic’s situation in the next few days, otherwise it will be a bit late to show up here.”

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