Australian Open set for huge day

Australian Open set for huge day

World No.1s Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams, grand slam king Roger Federer and local hopes Nick Kyrgios and Samantha Stosur headline a huge day one at the Australian Open in Melbourne.

Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova opens centre-court proceedings against Thai Luksika Kumkhum before Williams begins her title defence in the second match on Rod Laver Arena against Italian Camila Giorgi.

Djokovic, the men’s titleholder and seeking a record-equalling sixth crown at Melbourne Park, takes on exciting Korean teenager Hyeon Chung before making way for Federer and Stosur to feature in the two main night matches.

Federer, in his 17th Open campaign, plays Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili, with Stosur facing Czech qualifier Kristyna Pliskova.

As tennis’s biggest names chase a record $44 million in prize money at the richest annual event on the Australian sporting calendar, Kyrgios will square off with Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta in the feature night match at Hisense Arena.

Three other Australians are in action on Monday, with Daria Gavrilova playing dangerous Czech Lucie Hradecka on Margaret Court Arena.

Alja Tomljanovic meets Kateryna Bondarenko and former junior US Open champion Omar Jasika also plays a Ukrainian in Illya Marchenko.

Lleyton Hewitt launches his 20th and final Open bid on Tuesday against fellow Australian James Duckworth.

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