Melbourne is a sports fanatic’s heaven. From the iconic MCG to the street circuit Albert Park, it has something for everyone. If you adore sports then visiting Melbourne should be on top of your bucket list.
January though, is all about Rod Laver Arena as it plays host to the first and the hottest ( literally !) grand slam of the season : The Australian Open.
The season opener has an uncanny knack of getting the best out of the players. Over the years, we have been treated to some of the most scintillating tennis at the Rod Laver Arena, and this year it promises to get even better.
Here are the 5 things we can look forward to at the Australian Open.
Can anyone break the monotony?
It was here at the Rod laver Arena that Novak Djokovic won his maiden Grand slam title back in 2008. That victory made him believe that he could compete against the likes of Nadal and Federer. Over the next 7 years he hasn’t just competed against them, he blew them away enroute to adding 9 more grand slams to his kitty. Though Novak is considered to be good on all the surfaces, he is virtually invincible in Melbourne. 5 out of his 10 grand slam titles have come at this arena and few will bet against him equalling Roy Emerson’s record of most number of AO titles. Can anyone step up and break this monotony? We will have the answer in a fortnight’s time.
Serena Williams all set to rewrite the history books, again.
In recent times, every single grand slam has been an opportunity for Serena Williams to break some sort of a record. If Wimbledon 2015 presented her a chance to win a second “Serena Slam”, the unprecedented Calendar slam was up for grabs during the US Open. If Serena wins the Australian Open this time around, then she will be on par with Steffi Graf with 22 grand slam singles titles, which is the most by any player in the Open era. For someone who is used to breaking records, equalling Steffi should be a cakewalk. Such is Serena’s hunger for success that even after winning her 22nd title, she probably will say-” Margaret court, you’re next”
Thank you Rusty, it was a pleasure watching you play Tennis mate
The baseline warrior and one of the fiercest competitor, Lleyton Hewitt will hang up his boots after this year’s Australian Open. A former world number one and Wimbledon Champion, Hewitt will be remembered as the one who never gave up. He is definitely one of the best players from Australia and for him to bid adieu to the game which he loves the most in front of his home crowd will be a bittersweet moment. There will be tears and a sense of disappointment but there will also be a lot of satisfaction for the effort that he has put in for the last decade and a half. Thank you Rusty, it was a pleasure watching you play tennis mate.
Rafa and the twin career slam
Every Australian Open since 2011 has been an opportunity for Rafa Nadal to achieve a unique and significant feat. Another Victory at the Rod Laver Arena, will make Nadal the first man in the history of the game to achieve a double career slam. In this golden era of Men’s tennis such a record will surely be revered . However, with Novak playing his best tennis and Federer-aged 34 , dispatching his younger opponents with atmost ease, Nadal looks very unlikely to win it this time. But hey ! stranger things have happened in Melbourne and it will be foolish of anyone to write him off yet.
Wimbledon checked, Australian Open still remains
Much of Andy Murray’s career has revolved around him living up to “The Chosen One” tag. After Wimbledon 2012 and Olympic gold medal, the next goal for the unwavering Scot, is to become the first British to win the Australian Open In 78 years, a wait longer than the Wimbledon wait. Murray is one of the very few who has beaten Djokovic in the last 4 years and both of his grand slam victories has come at the expense of Nole. He traditionally is a good hard court player and his recent Davis cup victory would have done a whole lot of good to his confidence.so, come Australian Open Andy Murray’s quest to end one of Great Britain’s long awaited wait will continue.