Sports, Tennis

Djokovic, Murray battle likely in Australian Open

Published : 12 Jan 2024 05:31 PM

Top seed Novak Djokovic was drawn Thursday against a qualifier or lucky loser to begin his bid for an 11th Australian Open crown, and could meet fellow Grand Slam champion Andy Murray in the third round.

The Serbian, who has won 24 majors, defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in last year's final then added the French and US Open titles to his collection.

But the 36-year-old will begin his defence under an injury cloud after a wrist problem hampered him at the United Cup, where he lost to Australian Alex De Minaur.

Greek seventh seed Tsitsipas has a tough task to repeat his 2023 feat with former top 10 Italian Matteo Berrettini his opening opponent and Djokovic a potential quarter-finalist.

Spanish world number two Carlos Alcaraz, the only man to beat Djokovic at a Slam last year to win Wimbledon, gets his campaign under way against French veteran Richard Gasquet.

Like Djokovic, third seed Daniil Medvedev, a Melbourne finalist in 2021 and 2022, drew a qualifier in the first round.