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Australian Open : Federer Favourite?

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Chris Evert 'Roger Federer's body is a gift'

Nick Kyrgios has had enough of the rollercoaster ride and insists he is ready to take a more mature approach to his career.

Federer took his grand slam tally to 19 after extended rest breaks and Nadal, who enters his 18th season on the ATP tour, has also benefitted from carefully picking tournaments to preserve his fitness, something he will do so again this year.

"I've introduced new people to my team". That being said though, five years ago, at the end of 2012, just the triad of Nadal-Djokovic-Murray had emerged victorious in 42 such events.

"Whenever I get asked that question, it always comes across in an nearly negative way instead of acknowledging how many great players we have", said the British number one. "I needed time to kind of get used to that change, understand whether that's good or not good for me". I go day by day as I always did.

There were questions as recently as last weekend about whether mentor Andre Agassi would make the trip Down Under to join Novak Djokovic as he returned to action at the Australian Open.

Yet few would be surprised if the tournament ends in a repeat of last year's final with Federer up against his great Spanish rival and top seed Nadal. I'm expected to win a lot of matches.

Kyrgios, who made the Australian Open quarterfinals in 2015, will begin his 2018 campaign against Brazil's Rogerio Dutra Silva.

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"I'd like to do well". I don't know what's going to happen.

Entered into his first tournament draw since last year's Wimbledon, Djokovic starts in unfamiliar territory as the No.14 seed. We often engage in debates about the Greatest Of All Time, but do we spend time quantifying the collective prowess of generations and bench-marking how good (or bad) an entire generation of players was? I don't want to look ahead at all.

"I was happy to be out there in a pretty official-feeling match", said the 23-year-old.

There has never been a doubt that Kyrgios is capable of winning a grand slam but both mental and physical resilience has been a major issue. This enables us the option of the plethora of candidates (including Djokovic) in quarter three, as well as Federer in quarter four, and bettors who aren't put off by backing odds-on shots can consider this possibility.

Among No. 3 Grigor Dimitrov, No. 4 Alexander Zverev, No. 5 Thiem, No. 6 Marin Cilic, No. 7 David Goffin and No. 8 Jack Sock, only Cilic has reached a Grand Slam final (actually two, with one win).

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. "I feel myself more or less playing well", he said, which should strike a chord of fear in the hearts of his opponents. My physio flew in, so I've had him for the last two, three days.

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