Feature: Tie break 10s draw 2018
Fast paced tennis is hitting Melbourne before AO18 kicks off.
Triple Grand Slam champion Stan Wawrinka and former world No.1 Lleyton Hewitt are set to join Novak Djokovic and Nick Kyrgios at the Australian debut of Tie Break Tens.
Tie Break Tens, the innovative quick-fire format where matches consist of first-to-10 point tiebreaks, will take place at Margaret Court Arena (MCA) on Wednesday 10 January. The event promises a feast of fast and fun tennis to fans on the eve of Australian Open 2018, and the lure of $250,000 in prize money for the players.
Stan Wawrinka, one of the five active players with at least three Grand Slam titles to his name, cemented his career in Melbourne, where he won the Australian Open in 2014. Since then, his power, attacking style and one of the best backhands on tour have earned him a spot among the best. Stan 'The Man' has now won 16 titles in a prodigious decade in which he has had to square off against some of the best in history. As a result of his tenacity and ambition he managed to rise world to No.3, and only injury halted his progress in a 2017 in which he reached the finals of Indian Wells and the French Open.
“Following my participation at Tie Break Tens Madrid, I am keen to try my hand again at Tie Break Tens,” Wawrinka said.
“It seems fitting to play here in Australia, where I won the [Australian] Open back in 2014. With the knockout format, you definitely need to have your best shots ready from the first serve and I look forward to kicking off the 2018 season with this inaugural event.”
Tie Break Tens will also bring back one of the greats of the sport, Australia’s own Lleyton Hewitt. Although stepping down from the professional tour in 2016, Hewitt has kept his eye on the ball as Australia’s Davis Cup captain and will also play doubles at the Australian Open in 2018.
At the age of 16, in his hometown of Adelaide, Hewitt became the youngest player to win a title and at 20 became the youngest world No.1 since rankings began in 1973. Grit and character have been the hallmarks of his career which included an astounding 80 weeks as world No.1, a total of 30 professional titles and two Grand Slam titles – the US Open in 2001 and Wimbledon in 2002. His mental strength will be key when it comes to taking on the younger players and there’s no doubt he has the determination and staying power to cause an upset.
“I’m really looking forward to competing in Tie Break Tens in January. It’s always good fun to play new formats of tennis and I have no doubt this will be fast and fun for both the players and the fans,” Hewitt said. Hewitt and Wawrinka will join former world No.1 Novak Djokovic and Australia’s current top male player Nick Kyrgios for a magical night of high-calibre tennis just five days before the start of Australian Open 2018.
Tie Break Tens first launched in 2015 when rising star Kyle Edmund beat top-seeded Andy Murray in a gripping final at the Royal Albert Hall in London. Since then, two further tournaments have been staged in Madrid and Vienna with stars such as Dominic Thiem, Stan Wawrinka, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Grigor Dimitrov, Maria Sharapova, Simona Halep and Johanna Konta all vying for huge winner-takes-all prizes. More players will be announced in the coming days.
Tickets to Tie Break Tens are now available at www.ticketek.com.au