NEWS: Australian Open preview and Andy’s announcement

Disclaimer: forgive the haphazard nature of this post, tried to to write this with United Spurs in the background.

Thrillingly, it is just hours until the first slam of 2019, but all of the talk this week has, understandably been about Andy Murray.

Like his fellow players, pundits and fans alike, I sincerely hope Murray achieves his goal of bidding farewell at Wimbledon and not have to say goodbye to an incredible career this fortnight.

A full tribute will of course follow in due course.

But, now let’s look at Melbourne – I had forgotten about Simona’s herniated disc in my predictions for the year seeing her and Federer triumph here, I’ll stand by that as the women’s tour remains wholly unpredictable.

Djokovic will be strong, but faces some early tests in a returning Tsonga amongst others, Nadal should go far too but I still have worries about his fitness.

Zverev had such a strong finish last year but looked fairly hot and cold at the Hopman Cup. Don’t expect repeat performances from last year’s surprise packages Edmund and Chung.

The women’s tour remains so deep in quality ensuring it remains the more engrossing of the contests week in week out.

Some certainties remain: Wozniacki will struggle to make the second week, Svitolina should be strong, and Kerber perhaps remind the sleeper favourite.

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