Andy Murray to face Bautista Agut in Australian Open first round

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Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic are aiming for the same record from opposite sides of the draw, leaving open the prospect of them playing in the final for a seventh Australian Open title.

Now seeded 16th, Williams was drawn into the same section Thursday as No. 1-ranked Simona Halep, the runner-up here a year ago.

Defending champion Roger Federer takes on Denis Istomin in round one and is in the same half of the draw as Rafael Nadal, who faces Australian James Duckworth.

No. 4 Alexander Zverev is in the same half and looms in the semifinals if both players advance that far.

Murray, who has been runner-up to Djokovic in four of the five Australian Open finals he has lost, missed most of last season after hip surgery and is now ranked 230th.

"I always have tried to remind myself that this is a dream", Federer said of his longevity at the draw ceremony held at Margaret Court Arena, where he discovered the world number 99 would be his opening opponent.

Three-time grand slam victor Andy Murray has a tough clash with 22nd-seeded Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut as he returns from a hip injury. If it would happen defending this title, I would gladly accept it.

Kerber will open against Slovenia's Polona Hercog, while No.3 seed Wozniacki will face Alison van Uytvanck first up to begin her title defense.

The Spanish 22nd seed defeated Djokovic on his way to the title in Doha last week while concerns about Murray's fitness grew as he struggled through a practice match against world number one Djokovic at Melbourne Park today.

He was bundled out of the Brisbane International warm-up last week in round two by Russia's Daniil Medvedev and headed straight to Melbourne to fit in some much-needed practice. "I've had a great off-season and I feel very well prepared".

Konta is in a loaded top quarter of the draw that also includes world number one Simona Halep - who faces a rematch with her US Open conqueror Kaia Kanepi - Serena and Venus Williams, Garbine Mugurza and Karolina Pliskova. "I'm just enjoying every minute of it".

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