The 2013 Australian Open, the first Grand Slam event of the tennis season and the 101st installment of the tournament, began on Monday in Melbourne.
The open has already seen early wins by big names like Novak Djokovic, Maria Sharapova and Venus Williams, reported the BBC.
Djokovic, the two-time reigning Australian Open men’s singles champion, is aiming to make history by earning a third consecutive title at the open, a feat which no one has yet to accomplish in the tournament’s history. But despite those odds Djokovic sounded confident on Monday, after spending 64 weeks at the top of men’s rankings, reported UPI.
After defeating Frenchman Paul-Henri Mathieu in his first match on Monday, the Serbian top seed said he felt in control.
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"It was a good performance for a first round,” Djokovic told ESPN after the win. ”‘I felt I was in control of the match in the opening two sets. Then, you know, he started playing better, striking the ball quite well from both sides on the baseline. I thought he was serving really precisely and really well. It was tough to break. But in the end, that 11th game, I made some good shots, good points, you know, managed to go through straight sets."
The 25-year-old defending champion admitted to keeping a watchful eye on Andy Murray, the Scottish player who is ranked World No. 3. "At the start of the season you want to see how everybody's playing, how everybody's feeling, you know, how everybody confident is on the court or not,” said Djokovic. “It's the start of the season, so it still takes time to kind of get into that rhythm that you have to maintain throughout the whole year. But we try to mostly focus on ourselves and then, you know, I guess the results will follow."
On the women’s end, Serena Williams, who is favored to win over defending champion, Victoria Azarenka, sounded pleased with her win on Monday against Galina Voskoboeva.
"The stats looked good for me. I haven't seen them all yet, but I got a high first serve percentage and more winners than errors, so that always makes a good match,” said Williams. “ I don't think my opponent quite got the hang of, it's hard to play the first match in a major, first thing of the year, and that can be a lot of pressure. I did my best to just close it out."