The curtain rises on the Australian Open 2018.
The tempestuous 22-year-old has the brilliance and talent to win his national Open, yet it is his brittle state of mind that oftens malfunctions to his detriment.
This time his preparation has been virtually ideal, and Federer said of his expectations: "It's totally different".
"When he's on, he's on and he's really hard to beat. for him it's day to day and then week by week, can you keep it up?"
If Roger Federer were a superhero (to many, he already is), he would, he says, like to be Thor.
"For him it's maybe in his mind and his body because he still needs to work much more than he now is".
Nadal will make his return to action for the first time since pulling out of the ATP Finals in London back in November of past year when he takes on Victor Estrella Burgos in his opening match on Monday (15 January).
There's an extremely strong chance that Cilic will face worse players than himself until at least the quarter-final, and should Rafa get defeated, he would only face Pablo Carreno-Busta as a top ten opponent in the quarter.
"I'd like to do well. I am not the one to say, but somebody has to look about what's going on", he said.
But after sweeping to all four slams in a wildly retro 2017, the living legends are back in Australia as the world's top-two players and favoured to extend their compelling grand slam rivalry to a 14th year.
While Stephens speaks of hope heading into the new year, she didn't start 2018 on a high note. "They know when they're coming, whatever day they bought tickets, there's going to be great matches on". "I want to take care of business one round at a time".
"Whenever I get asked that question, it always comes across in really kind of an nearly negative way instead of acknowledging how many great players we have", Johanna Konta, who reached the semifinals of Wimbledon previous year, said in her pre-tournament news conference Saturday.
"I think a year ago there were periods where I was really good and really bad", he told reporters at Melbourne Park on Saturday. That's why I see things more relaxed at a later stage of my career'.
"I increased my serve by several kilometres per hour and I think I did better overall with my second than first, and I can say I won some points nearly for free as a result", Nadal said in an interview with Spanish daily AS in December.
"Even Sydney I played (former world number two) Agnieszka (Radwanska)". But right now it's at the level where I can compete'.
"Now, whether my approach is different to this year's Australian Open to other previous years, probably yes".
I'm feeling pretty good about my tennis and I've played a lot of big matches with Hewitt, at grand slams and the Davis Cup, so we are prepared. "I have a good relationship with Dominic, I spoke to him about that".
I have delayed my retirement to take in the Australian Open because I love the event so much.
Kyrgios said he had no injury problems heading into the tournament.
The good news is that, at the time of writing, Novak Djokovic (dodgy elbow) is still planning on playing and Stan Wawrinka (even dodgier knee) is hoping to do likewise. "It is nothing new for me that I get an injury".
"Haven't been spending too much time around the courts". I've been doing my practice, getting out of here and just relaxing. "So it's been good".
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