AUS Open '20: Venus Williams vs. Coco Gauff highlights Day 1

Ruben Hill
January 19, 2020

Williams has lost four major finals, two at Wimbledon and two at the U.S. Open, since her 2017 Australian Open crown.

"And I'm playing Steve Johnson, by the way, for those who care", a smiling Federer told reporters. "I think that definitely rivalries with them made me very, very strong, very resilient, and also very motivated that I am still today". With tennis still being played in Australia despite the bushfires all over the nation, criticism of the year's first Slam has come under heavy scrutiny.

The Spanish top seed said that he had met with tournament director Craig Tiley and said that he was "convinced" by safeguards being put in place if it was decided that the air was too unsafe to compete in. "But I had my moment, and I always said everything that comes after 15 was, anyway, a bonus".

"I don't think that's miles, miles away, maybe as it was some years ago".

Like Nadal and Federer, three-time major semifinalist Grigor Dimitrov took the view that tournament and tour officials have "been looking after us". "We are speculating if that would happen, but if we had to work it out we would".

On Monday, Federer and also Djokovic will certainly begin their quest of an additional Slam prize at the Australian Open in Melbourne. Soon, they'll all be competitors again.

The Swiss player who won his last Grand Slam in 2018 at the Australian Open voluntarily did not play the ATP Cup for spending more time with his family.

The former number one and two-time Grand Slam champion struggled towards the end of the year with the injury, which has troubled her for several years.

Gauff then made the US Open third round and won her maiden title in Linz in her next tournament.

Williams is in the same quarter of the draw as her sister Venus, the oldest woman in the field at 39. Sportsbooks list the 38-year-old Williams as the 22-5 favorite in the latest 2020 Australian Open odds, followed by world No. 1 Barty and defending champion Naomi Osaka at 9-1, Simona Halep at 10-1, Karolina Pliskova at 12-1, and Madison Keys at 18-1.

No. 1 seed Ashleigh Barty of Australia, last year's French Open victor, comes in buoyed by winning a pre-Open tournament in Adelaide, Australia. Bianca Andreescu of Canada, the 2019 U.S. Open victor, withdrew because of a lingering knee injury.

Australian Open organisers have since confirmed matches will be suspended if the level of air quality goes above 200 on the PM2.5 measure they are using.

But Djokovic, who turns 33 later this year, admitted that actually winning a slam is still an incredibly hard thing to do. He has two Australian Open titles among his 19 Slam singles championships.

Stefanos Tsitsipas, a 21-year-old from Greece who upset Federer a year ago in Australia en route to his first Grand Slam semifinal, said he had trouble breathing after an indoor practice session when he first arrived in Melbourne.

Djokovic and Federer are in the same half of the draw, setting up a potential semifinal meeting.

"I really can not believe that the most important committee in the world wants bad health for the competitors", Nadal said. "I think it's closer than ever, obviously, that these young guys are going to make a breakthrough, but you've got to tip your hat to the three guys".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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