13 January 2013 12:00 | By Thomas Oakey
Australian Open 2013: Ones to watch

Who to watch at Melbourne Park



Who to watch at Melbourne Park (© Getty / Rex / Reuters)
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  • Who to watch at Melbourne Park (© Getty / Rex / Reuters)
  • David Ferrer (© Clive Brunskill / Getty Images)
  • Tomas Berdych (© William West / 2012 AFP)
  • Juan Martin Del Potro (© Suzanne Plunkett / Reuters)
  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (© Dylan Martinez / Reuters)
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In recent years, you could be forgiven for thinking tennis was limited to a select bunch of professionals. After all, apart from the U.S Open in 2009, every single major trophy in the men's game has been lifted by the hands of one of the 'big four'€™ of the game --€“ that'€™s Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray -- while the likes of the Williams sisters, in particular Serena, have ruled the women's game for some time now.

However, with the 2012 Australian Open beginning on January 14, there'€™s a renewed sense of optimism amongst those lower down the ranking lists. With Federer and Serena both set to turn 32 this year, the extended absence of injury-plagued Nadal from the world stage and general inconsistency in the women'€™s division, those on the fringes may feel now is their opportunity for a tilt at glory.

But which of the current mix of up-and-coming stars and old hands are really ready to challenge those at the top? We've profiled the stars aiming to give the status quo a shake-up at Melbourne Park this January...

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