The official draw for the 2018 Australian Open took place at Margaret Court Arena on Thursday evening. Defending champion Roger Federer and 2008 winner Maria Sharapova attended the ceremony which was opened to the public for the first time.
Novak, a record six–time AO titlist, is set to play in his first tour event after Wimbledon last summer. The 30-year-old Serbian star is no.14 seed and will open campaign against world no.63 Donald Young (USA). It will be their third career meeting (2-0 H2H).
In the second round, Djokovic will face the winner of the match between Frenchman Gael Monfils and a qualifier.
The earliest seed he could meet is no.21, Albert Ramos-Vinolas (ESP), in round three.
Novak’s potential opponents in the later stages of the tournament:
Fourth round: Alexander Zverev (GER, 4), Mischa Zverev (GER, 32)
Quarter-finals: Dominic Thiem (AUT, 5), Stan Wawrinka (SUI, 9), Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP, 20)
Semi-finals: Roger Federer (SUI, 2), David Goffin (BEL, 7), Juan Martin del Potro (ARG, 12), Tomas Berdych (CZE, 19)
No.1 seed Rafael Nadal (ESP) is in the top half of the draw, as well as Grigor Dimitrov (BUL, 3) and Marin Cilic (CRO, 6).
Novak won half of his 12 Grand Slam trophies in Melbourne (2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016). Last year, he suffered a surprise 6-7 (8), 7-5, 6-2, 6-7 (5), 4-6 second-round defeat to Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan.