Big Names on Rod Laver Arena

Image courtesy of bbc.co.uk
Lleyton Hewitt could be playing in his final Australian Open. Image courtesy of bbc.co.uk
Lleyton Hewitt  will face little known German Cedric-Marcel Stebe  in the opening round of the 2012 Australian Open on Rod Laver Arena tonight. The former world number one has had a tough start to the New Year, winning just one of his three matches at the Hopman Cup before crashing out of the APIA International in Sydney after losing his first round match to Serbian Viktor Troicki. In fairness to him, each of his defeats has come against players ranked in the top 25 in the world.

Hewitt should face a much easier task against world number 83 Stebe, who is still making a name for himself on the ATP tour. The twenty-one year old is yet to win a match in 2012 after bowing out in the first round in both Sydney and Brisbane this year. Despite looking to have a clear advantage going into the match, Hewitt will go into it with caution, having struggled at Melbourne Park in recent years, bowing out in the opening round in two of the last three renewals.

Four time champion Serena Williams  gets her campaign underway when she does battle with Austrian Tamira Paszek  immediately after the conclusion of Hewitt’s match. 

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