Serena given tough draw in Australian Open
Serena Williams, chasing her fourth Australian Open title, has drawn sister Venus and in-form Russian Elena Dementieva in her half of the women's singles draw for the year's first grand slam starting in Melbourne.sports Updated: Jan 16, 2009 12:50 IST
Serena Williams, chasing her fourth Australian Open title, has drawn sister Venus and in-form Russian Elena Dementieva in her half of the women's singles draw for the year's first grand slam starting in Melbourne on Monday.
The second-seeded American is looking for her 10th grand slam title, but has been given few favours by the draw's computer.
She starts off against China's Meng Yuan and has a potential quarter-final against Russian eighth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova and a possible semi-final against either her sixth-seeded sister Venus or fourth-seeded Dementieva.
Dementieva crushed Williams in straight sets in their semi-final of the Sydney International yesterday.
Venus Williams kicks off her Australian campaign against Angelique Kerber, while Dementieva faces another German, Kristina Barrois.
World number one Jelena Jankovic has Russian third seed Dinara Safina and fifth-seeded Serbian Ana Ivanovic in her top half of the draw.
Jankovic begins with a match against Austrian Yvonne Meusburger and could come up against number seven seed Vera Zvonareva of Russia in the quarter-finals.
Safina will play fellow Russian Alla Kudryavtseva in the first round, while Ivanovic has drawn German Julia Goerges.
Defending champion Maria Sharapova has withdrawn from the Open amid fitness concerns after a shoulder injury last year.