In a column for La Gazzetta dello Sport dello Sport the former world No. 12 singles player and current Sky Sport commentator Paolo Bertolucci previewed the upcoming Australian Open. Bertolucci sees the Big 3 - Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal - starting as favorites.
'Compared to last year the players' quality is definitely higher thanks to the comebacks, even if in some case not fully, of experienced players like Wawrinka and Nishikori', Bertolucci wrote. 'Also, the Next Generation became more competitive, which makes the topic more intriguing.
Anyway, you have to consider Djokovic as a favourite for the final win as he played great in the second half of 2018. Six great months in which the Serb cameback to triumph on the biggest stage showing the desire to try to seek Federer's Grand Slam titles record.
But the Swiss, although he is 12 months older, is one of the main favorites to win the title. Then there is the mysterious Nadal who hided himself behind some physical issues and an unknown physical condition. If Zverev will have handled the problems he dealt with at the best of five sets, he may play on the Rod Laver Arena for a long time.
Also Khachanov, Cilic, Anderson, Tsitsipas, Shapovalov and Coric are in the spotlight.' About the Italian men's tennis, Bertolucci said some improvements can be clearly seen. He said: 'Fognini is unpredictable, Seppi is eternal, then you have the younger guys, Cecchinato and Berrettini.
In the mysterious female world Serena Williams and Simona Halep may face early in the tournament. You also have to consider Osaka, Kerber, Wozniacki and Pliskova.' ALSO READ: Rafael Nadal: Worse players than David Ferrer won a Grand Slam title