Andy Murray, Serena Williams expected to play in Australian Open

Doug Mendoza
October 11, 2017

At a news conference Tuesday called to announce an increase in prize money for the year's first major, tournament director Craig Tiley said Williams was planning on playing the January 15-28 Australian Open.

Her first child's initials are the same as the first Grand Slam of the year and Williams had previously outlined her plans to defend the title they won together - despite the tournament starting just four months after she gave birth. "It's exciting to think Serena could return to defend her title after motherhood, and it's also exciting to speculate on who can break through the pack to win", Tiley added.

Williams was pregnant in January when she defeated her sister Venus in the championship match.

Despite Williams' past assertions, however, she's been mum lately about her intentions with tennis, preferring instead to share more parental-oriented tidbits.

The 2018 Open will offer record prizemoney of $55 million, with the men's and women's winners each to pocket a record $4 million. "Obviously, at training now, there is several months to go and it will be up to her as far as where she is with her fitness".

Another star who is expected to return to action, though there is no confirmation, is 2017 Australian Open champion Serena Williams as he she prepares for her comeback.

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"I can tell you that in talking to Andy, he has been training and he is preparing for having a great year in 2018", Tiley said.

The women's trophy will be presented by USA great Billie Jean King, 50 years after she won her first Australian Open title.

The British number one has been sidelined since limping out of Wimbledon with a hip injury in July and he is unlikely to play again this year.

Australia's charge in the men's draw will be led by world No.21 Nick Kyrgios but Tiley couldn't guarantee that Bernard Tomic would get a start.

Tiley said while the upgrade to include a 5,000-seat sunken show-court wouldn't be complete until 2019, the tournament wouldn't be affected, with more music and a larger kids zone part of the attractions.

Other reports by GizPress

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