Australian Open kicks off ATP season


Evan Xiong, Editor in Chief

With the beginning of a new year comes a new ATP Tour season, and the first tournament is one of the biggest all year, the Australian Open. Being one of the four grand slams of the year, it is one of the most prestigious tournaments to win, and it will award the winner more points than any other tournament.  

There are many tennis players on the tour, some being more liked than others. Aside from that, every viewer has a player that they want to win the Australian Open. Whether it may be a top ten player or a lower ranked player, anyone could win the tournament. “I want Rafa to win the Australian Open this year. He is my favorite player on tour and it’d be nice to see him win his 23rd grand slam title,” junior Ryan Bilan said.

One of the most well known tennis players in the history of the game is Novak Djokovic. Last year, Djokovic was banned from playing at the Australian Open because he refused to get the COVID vaccine. Nevertheless, he will be allowed to play this year, and many Serbian fans are excited to see how he performs. “I’m very excited about Novak being able to play this year. His ban being lifted shows that the whole situation was a joke to begin with,” senior Natasa Pupovac said. “I hope that this year he can come back stronger than before and get his 10th Australian Open title. Rumors have it that he might even get a statue if he wins this year.” 

In the past 10 years, only a few men have been able to defeat the big three and claim the title for themselves. Some of these players being Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka, and most recently, Carlos Alcaraz. It is rare for a low seeded player to win a big tournament, but it is possible and it does happen believe it or not. “I have actually two dark horse picks for this year’s Australian Open. The first being Thanasi Kokkinakis and the second Cam Norrie,” junior Alex Bevirt said. Although Norrie is the 11th seed, he struggles to beat the higher seeded players, so it’d be nice to see either one of them make a deep run at AO.” 

With the world number one, Carlos Alcaraz and fan favorite Nick Kyrgios out of Australian Open this year due to injuries, this year is a great opportunity to see a new champion hold the trophy. It will not be easy though as both Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, both previous winners, are playing as well. As the bracket gets smaller by the day, only time will tell who will hold the trophy.