Roger Federer and Angelique Kerber can rise from Australian Open wreckage | Kevin Mitchell

New injury doubts over Rafael Nadal, Stan Wawrinka and Petra Kvitova make it difficult to identify favourites in a tournament where confusion pervades

Only a few days before the first ball is struck, the Australian Open resembles a shredded carcass. So ravaged are both draws, it is a taking a leap of faith to declare across time zones that there will be no more wounded joining the leading women and men who have either fallen or are sinking to their knees before the first grand slam of the season.

A year ago, the one-time prodigy Mirjana Lucic-Baroni laughed at the years when she re-entered the top 20 at 35 and enjoyed a dream run to the semi-finals in Melbourne; on Monday, she was forced to quit through illness when trailing Petra Kvitova 1-6 in Sydney. A week ago, Kvitova, who has thrilled the sport coming back from a knife attack in her home two Christmases ago, had to retire with viral illness from the Brisbane International.

Continue reading...

About the Author

Comments are closed.