The 2013 Australian Open is set to get underway from Melbourne Park on Monday, January 14. The seedings have been released and tennis' top players have a pretty solid idea of where they stand among the favorites in this year's tournament.
Here we get you set with everything you need to know for this January's Australian Open 2013 draw release.
Main Draw Release Date: Friday, Jan. 11
Live Streaming: Australian Open TV
Early Favorites (Tournament seed)
Novak Djokovic (No. 1)
The three-time Australian Open champion has won the last two Grand Slams Down Under, and enters 2013 as the world's No. 1 player on the men's side and with a huge target on his back.
Djokovic started and ended fast in 2012, struggling at times in the middle. But his dominance on the hard courts at the ATP World Tour Finals last November has him firing on all cylinders entering this January's two-week-long event.
There isn't a more athletic player out there than Djokovic, who routinely pushes his body to the limits at major events like this one. The reigning champion will be nearly impossible to beat in Australia.
Andy Murray (No. 3)
Andy Murray's confidence has to be sky high after knocking off Novak Djokovic at the U.S. Open last September to claim his first career Grand Slam title.
The Scottish star has come close to winning the Australian Open in the past, reaching the men's final in 2010 and 2011, only to lose on both occasions to Roger Federer and Djokovic respectively. Last year Murray lost a five-set thriller to Djokovic in the semis in Melbourne, taking a step back but also proving he can contend.
Despite his shortcomings Down Under, Murray is the most recent Slam champion on the men's side and will have a ton of confidence to take into his matches with the sport's top dogs this January.
Victoria Azarenka (No. 1)
With a second straight title at the Australian Open, 23-year-old Victoria Azarenka would have to be considered the Queen of Melbourne Park.
The Belarusian displayed nerves of steel during last year's tournament, running through Agnieszka Radwanska, Kim Clijsters and Maria Sharapova on her way to winning her first career Grand Slam. Like Djokovic, Azarenka will have a Australia-sized target on her back this January though, coming in as the tournament's defending champion and the No. 1-ranked female player in the world.
As she showed in Flushing Meadows last September, she is a dynamic player on the hard court.
Serena Williams (No. 3)
There isn't a hotter tennis player on the planet right now than Serena Williams. Although she finished behind Victoria Azarenka and Maria Sharapova in the year-ending WTA Rankings in 2012, Williams has tons of momentum on her side.
She has won 35 of her last 36 singles matches—winning Wimbledon, gold at the London Olympics and the U.S Open. Williams also rolled to a championship at the WTA Brisbane International last week in lead-up to the Australian Open.
Although she bowed out in the fourth round last year, Williams is a five-time Aussie Open champion, her last title there coming in 2010.
Click here to view all 32 seeded players on both the men's and women's side.
Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter throughout the 2013 Australian Open for analysis and reaction on the year's first Grand Slam.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!