Fit and in form, Australian star Lleyton Hewitt has welcomed the opportunity to play one of the world’s top 10 players in the opening round of the Australian Open.
Hewitt will begin his 2013 campaign against eighth seed Janko Tipsarevic on Rod Laver Arena on Monday night.
While playing a top seed in the opening round is a difficult way to start a tournament, Hewitt said he was ready for the challenge.
“I don't care. I'll knock him off, try to take his spot in the draw,” Hewitt said.
Hewitt will face the winner of 69th ranked Gillies Muller and 48th ranked Lukas Lacko if he beats Tipsarevic.
Having beaten Argentinian Juan Martin del Potro, Czech Tomas Berdych and Canadian Milos Raonic on the way to winning the Kooyong Classic, Hewitt has begun the year in great form.
“The last couple matches I've hit the ball as well as I can remember when I hit it,” Hewitt said.
“I feel confident with where my game's at at the moment. There's still a couple things I got to try to take care of when I'm on the match court.
“But all in all, when my moving comes together and I'm serving well, my returns and obviously passing shots and counterpunching has been pretty good anyways.
“Yeah, I've been practicing well on my off days. So far I haven't put too many feet wrong.”
Hewitt is among nine Australians in action on Monday.
All eyes will be on ninth seed Samantha Stosur's first-round tussle with Taiwan's Kai-Chen Chang, the second match on Rod Laver Arena.
Wildcard playoff winner Bojana Bobusic has a daunting assignment against Polish fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska, who is unbeaten this summer and won the Sydney International on Friday night with a 6-0 6-0 drubbing of Dominika Cibulkova.
Teenage wildcard Ashleigh Barty faces Cibulkova, the 15th seed, while Casey Dellacqua faces American Madison Keys, Sacha Jones faces Czech Kristyna Pliskova and Olivia Rogowska has Serbian qualifier Vesna Dolonc.
Matthew Ebden plays Russian 23rd seed Mikhail Youzhny and wildcard John Millman is up against Japan's Tatsuma Ito in his Open main-draw debut.
Bernard Tomic opens his title quest on Tuesday against Argentine Leonardo Mayer.
- with AAP