Novak Djokovic says he feels 'phenomenal' ahead of Australian Open
Serb aims to dominate in Melbourne once again
By Raz Mirza
Last Updated: 11/01/17 4:12pm
Novak Djokovic says he feels in "phenomenal" shape ahead of the Australian Open, which begins in Melbourne on Monday.
The former world No 1 believes he is back to his very best after defeating Andy Murray to defend his Qatar Open title in Doha last weekend.
Last season, the 12-time major winner imploded after a third-round loss at Wimbledon. A shock defeat to Sam Querrey ended his hopes of a calendar-year Grand Slam and was followed by a first-round exit to Juan Martin del Potro at the Rio Olympics and defeat to Stan Wawrinka in the US Open final.
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Djokovic has won the Australian Open six times, including the last two years, and should he successfully defend his title again he will become the first player in history to win the event seven times, moving one clear of Australia's Roy Emerson.
"I'm feeling phenomenal," said Djokovic. "I'm excited as everyone else to be at probably the best Grand Slam in our sport. Considering the memories that I had here and the results in the past, I'm glad to be back again.
"This is the year in 2017 for seven, seven - I don't know, I'm not a numerologist, but it sounds good."
Djokovic is also excited about renewing his long-standing rivalry with new world No 1 Murray, adding: "Andy has absolutely deserved to be No 1 in the world. He has had a tremendous last six months of 2016 and this year we've already played a thrilling match.
"In terms of my feelings coming to Melbourne, the last five or six years it's pretty much the same. I'm pumped to do well but I'm sure I'm not the only one who's excited, but it gives me a lot of goosebumps coming back."
Meanwhile, French No 1 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga hopes to be more consistent this year after a troubled 2016 which was disrupted by a string of knee and leg injuries.
"The main goal for me in 2017 is of course to stay healthy and then try to be back in the Top 10 and be able to play the best players in the world consistently," Tsonga said.
"I know it's a good surface [at the Australian Open] to perform so I hope it's going to be a good tournament for me and give me confidence for the rest of the season."
Check our game-by-game updates from Andy Murray's matches at the 2017 Australian Open by following our blog on skysports.com/tennis, our app for mobile devices and iPad or our Twitter account @skysportstennis.
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