MELBOURNE, Australia – Defending champion Victoria Azarenka and title favorite Serena Williams are in the same half of the draw at the Australian Open, meaning they could meet in the semifinals.
Top-ranked Azarenka has lost 11 of her 12 matches against Williams, who increased her career haul to 15 Grand Slam titles last year by winning at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.
No. 2-ranked Maria Sharapova, the French Open champion, is on the other half of the draw and could meet Venus Williams in the third round.
Novak Djokovic's bid for a third consecutive Australia Open title got a boost when No. 2-ranked Roger Federer and U.S. Open champion Andy Murray both landed in the other half when the official draw was made Friday.