America’s Serena Williams and Great Britain’s Andy Murray have confirmed they will compete at the 2019 Australian Open in January.
Williams will resume her quest to win a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title in Melbourne next month after a disappointing end to the 2018 campaign.
The 37-year-old last won the event in 2016, her seventh in Melbourne. She beat sister Venus while eight weeks pregnant before then taking a break for the rest of the year.
The fans’ favourite reached the Wimbledon and US Open finals last season but lost on both occasions.
Her defeat at Flushing Meadows to Naomi Osaka was overshadowed after her row with umpire Carlos Ramos.
She will now be hoping to put that behind her and win another Grand Slam and is the 7.00 Australian Open favourite, with Osaka her closest rival at odds of 10.00.
Williams will warm up for the event by playing an exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi before heading Down Under to play at the Hopman Cup in Perth.
Elsewhere, Murray has also confirmed he will be part of the 101-strong field in the men’s tournament.
The two-time Wimbledon champion has finished as runner-up on five occasions in Melbourne and will be looking to go one better this time around.
He missed three of the four Slams last year because of a hip injury and will enter the tournament 259th in the world as a result.
Novak Djokovic remains 2.20 favourite, while Rafael Nadal is 6.50. Murray’s lack of action means he is an outsider at odds of 21.00.