After a brief off-season, tennis superstar Roger Federer has touched down in Perth, joining a host of fellow superstars already preparing for the Hopman Cup.
The Swiss’ arrival came a day after reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber flew into Perth, while Kerber’s German teammate Alexander Zverev has been in Perth since before Christmas.
— The Today Show (@TheTodayShow) December 26, 2018
Big names are also arriving on Australia’s east coast, with three-time major winner Andy Murray landing in Brisbane to join US Open champion Naomi Osaka, who has been training at the Queensland Tennis Centre since Christmas Eve.
In a boon for fans of the two popular players, Murray and Osaka even practised together at Pat Rafter Arena.
Earlier on Thursday, Osaka took some time out from practice to visit the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, where she cuddled up to a fluffy koala as well yet looked a little more uneasy when draped with a snake.
Former world No.3 Grigor Dimitrov has also arrived in Brisbane – where he was a champion in 2017 – as have British duo Johanna Konta and Kyle Edmund.
And more stars are rolling into Perth, most notably Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Greek sensation who stormed into the top 20 after a breakthrough 2018 season.
— #BrisbaneTennis (@BrisbaneTennis) December 27, 2018
Federer’s Swiss playing partner Belinda Bencic tweeted the start of her journey from Europe to Australia; in less than a day she will join the growing number of players converging on Perth Arena.
Further afield, American duo Lauren Davis and Amanda Anisimova were snapped kayaking at Mission Bay ahead of the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand.
They join two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka and former world No.5 Eugenie Bouchard, who have been training on site in Auckland in preparation for the WTA international-level event.
Genie Bouchard currently on centre court for a practice session with her coach in the Auckland sunshine! ????
— ASB Classic (@ASB_Classic) December 26, 2018
Meanwhile, a host of superstars will take to the court for the upcoming Mubadala World Tennis Championship event in Abu Dhabi.
Serena and Venus Williams and Rafael Nadal will all take to the court for the first time in a competitive setting since the US Open.
Novak Djokovic and Karen Khachanov will also take part in the exhibition event.
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