Melbourne - World number one Novak Djokovic
faces his toughest test at the Australian Open so far on Friday when he takes
on Italian Andreas Seppi, who stunned Roger Federer at the same stage last
The Serbian top seed is relegated to
Margaret Court Arena for his night match, bumped off the centre court Rod Laver
Arena by combustible local hope Nick Kyrgios, who is against sixth seed Tomas
Djokovic, gunning for an 11th Grand Slam
title, is wary of the threat posed by Seppi, seeded 28.
"He won against (Roger) Federer last
year in third round. I think he deserves a lot of respect for the amount of
years that he spent in top 30," said the Serb, a five-time champion at
"He's not really overwhelmed by a big
occasion, so I expect him to try his best to win.
"It's going to be a tough one. I need
to be ready for rallies. It's going to be physical match. But the way I've been
playing, I have a lot of faith and confidence in my game."
Serena Williams is on Rod Laver immediately
before Kyrgios and Berdych and faces 18-year-old Russian Daria Kasatkina, who
is contesting her first Australian Open compared to the American's 16th.
The world number one's long-time rival
Maria Sharapova is also on court, with the in-form Russian taking on American
Lauren Davis as she looks for her first Australian title since 2008.
Federer is hoping to erase his shock defeat
to Seppi in last year's third round when he meets Grigor Dimitrov - the
Bulgarian once dubbed "Baby Fed".
"I think it's a tough draw. He's got
the game to be really dangerous," said the wary 17-time Grand Slam winner.
"He's fit enough for a five-setter so
I've gotta definitely bring my best game to the court."
Japanese hope Kei Nishikori is also in
action, along with women's fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska and Australian
giant-killer Daria Gavrilova, who upset sixth seed Petra Kvitova.