Familiar draw for Michael Venus in the first round of the Australian Open
Draw change for Michael Venus in the first round of the Australian Open
Michael Venus and new partner, Jamie Murray are the 11th seeds in the doubles and were to face recent teammate, Tim Puetz and Frenchman Nicholas Mahut, a five-time Grand Slam doubles winner in the first round.
However, all that has changed with the draw being altered after the Nick Kyrgios and Thonasi Kokkanakis withdrawal meaning a reshuffle of opponents.
The new draw pits Venus and Murray against American Hunter Reese ranked 83rd and Colombian Cristian Rodriguez who has a ranking of 70.
Venus and Murray reached the final of the ATP tournament in Adelaide to start the year but had a difficult three set loss indoors at the ASB Classic.
Meanwhile in the women’s doubles draw, Erin Routliffe is back with Alicja Rosolska from Poland and they are the 14th seeds. Competing in her second Australian Open, Routliffe has a current doubles ranking of 30 while Rosolska is 32nd.
Their first round encounter will see them up against Belgian Greet Minnen ranked 74th in doubles and Anna Bondar (Hungary) who is ranked 50th.
Two Kiwi juniors are also in Australia in the hopes of making the main draw competition for the Junior Australian Open starting on 21 January. Vivian Yang, currently ranked 84 in the world and Diego Quispe-Kim, ranked 70 are both hopeful of direct entry but may need to enter via the qualifying route which gets underway in a couple of days.