Australian Open 2018: What the players are saying

Australian Open 2018: What the players are saying

Before the last couple of years he had never had time off, which is just incredible. As I mentioned previously, Djokovic in any semblance of his best level, should be a heavy favourite to progress, but that's a big if. "I haven't dreamt that much about winning at the O2, but I did it". Cilic certainly hasn't played his best tennis post-injury sustained at Wimbledon, but has a tendency to beat those worse and lose against better opponents.

"Both Radek and Andre have discussed a lot before the information came across to me", Djokovic said. I feel like I am maturing a lot.

Kyrgios, who got to the quarter-finals of the tournament in 2015, faces Brazil's Rogerio Dutra Silva in the first round.

"There's pressure wherever I go".

Djokovic, the six-time champion and victor of 12 grand slam titles, has slumped to No.14 in the rankings and is pleased just to be here. Even one of the key ceremonial figures is expected to skip the festivities: Margaret Court, long retired but still in the headlines, says she will go crab fishing instead this year as the debate continues about whether the Australian Open's third-biggest show court should continue to bear her name. It would bring so many returns from so many absences that it seemed primed to take a sport with holes in its draws and stitch the whole thing back together. I've had the luxury of getting treated in my room at my hotel.

Sections of the Melbourne Park crowd jeered him as he suffered a meltdown to lose to Andreas Seppi in five sets in the second round previous year. "I've done really everything in my power, with a team of people around me, to enable me to be right here in front of you guys, and to compete in Australian Open", the six-time champion at the Australian Open said. I don't need to be 31 to say, OK, I am lucky to be here. No. Which should strike a chord of fear into the hearts of the tournament organisers.

2017 was the year for the over 30s as all four men's Grand Slams were won by Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. How could these two old champions turn it on again?

Nadal and Federer 12 months ago. Dimitrov did engage Nadal in a brawl of a 2017 Australian semifinal, falling only 6-4 in the fifth set, and did win the ATP Finals in London in November.

Venus Williams says Serena is "here in spirit" supporting her in Australia, where she's hopeful of ending an nearly decade-long Grand Slam title drought.

Meanwhile the defending champion is looking good. If you're in the draw, you give yourself a chance.

The old GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) may be 36 but he is one of the few men able to walk to the courts unaided this week.

Nick Kyrgios begins his Australian Open campaign on Monday night buoyed by a swell of local hopes, joining him in contention for a home grand slam.