Australian Open 2015: Federer, Williams and more facts and figures
Some facts and figures ahead of the first Grand Slam of the year in Melbourne
The No1 ranking for both men and women is up for grabs at the first Grand Slam of the year in Australia.
Roger Federer could overtake Novak Djokovic, and Maria Sharapova could grab No1 from Serena Williams.
Indeed on the women’s side, the top spot is within the reach of four different women by the tournament’s conclusion in two weeks’ time.
These and other noteworthy milestones will be on show when the main draws get under way later today. Some will be ticked off on the first day, others may be ticked off on the last. Here are some of the statistical storylines to follow.
• Both Djokovic and Federer are bidding to become only the second man ever to win five or more Australian Open singles titles. The first and only to date is Roy Emerson with six.
• Rafael Nadal could become the first man in the Open Era—and only the third man in history—to win each of the four Grand Slam titles twice. Emerson and Rod Laver are the only others.
• Serena Williams has made the fewest first-round exits of any active woman on the tour at any Grand Slam: just one, at Roland Garros in 2012, in 57 starts. She has also won the most titles, 18, and reached most finals, 22.
• Federer is aiming for his 18th Major, which would tie him with Williams, Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova in equal fourth place on the all-time list of singles titles. Williams could move into equal third place if she wins.
• Lleyton Hewitt is making his 19th appearance in Melbourne, setting a new record for the most Australian Open appearances. He also holds the record for the most consecutive appearances in Melbourne.
• The women’s draw has 14 players who are 30 or older, but only eight teenagers. Kimiko Date-Krumm, at 44, is the oldest (and the oldest ever to contest the Australian title), while Venus Williams, age 34, is the oldest seed. Ana Konjuh, 17, is the youngest woman, while Bencic, also 17, is the youngest seed.
• Federer could become the oldest man to win the Australian Open since Ken Rosewall, who was 37 when he lifted the trophy in 1972.
• Francesca Schiavone will make her 58th consecutive Grand Slam appearance in Melbourne.
• Federer is competing in his 61st consecutive Major, which extends his record for the longest streak in Grand Slam singles in the Open era.
• Venus Williams is playing in her 65th Grand Slam main draw, the third most in the Open Era and just two fewer than Martina Navratilova.
• Federer and Hewitt are both playing in their 63rd Grand Slam, second only to Fabrice Santoro’s 70.
• The last time an Australian man won the home title was in 1976, the longest period that any of the Grand Slams has gone without a home champion. Mark Edmondson was also the only unseeded player to win in Australia.
• First time Grand Slam seeds include David Goffin, Pablo Cuevas, Karolina Pliskova, Elina Svitolina, Zarina Diyas, and Belinda Bencic.
• Stefan Edberg is the only player to have won both the junior and senior men’s Australian titles in the Open Era. Seven former junior winners in this year’s draw have the chance to repeat that feat: Marcos Baghdatis; Gael Monfils; Donald Young; Bernard Tomic; Jiri Vesely; Luke Saville; Nick Kyrgios
• And what about those No1s?
Federer could become No1 if he wins the Australian Open but only if Djokovic fails to reach the fourth round.
Sharapova could become No1, but has to reach at least the semi-finals. If Williams reaches the third round, Sharapova needs to reach the final. If the two women meet in the final, the winner will be No1.
However, the No3 and 4 seeds, Simona Halep and Petra Kvitova, could snatch the spoils if one of them wins the title and both Williams and Sharapova fall early.