Melbourne, Jan 14 (IANS) Defending champions and world No. 1 ranked Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams top the Australian Open seedings lists, which follow rankings ahead of the first Grand Slam tournament of 2016.
Four-time finalist Andy Murray was seeded No. 2, 17-time major winner Roger Federer was No. 3 and 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka was No. 4, one higher than Rafael Nadal, according to Xinhua news agency.
On the women’s side, Simona Halep was No. 2, Garbine Muguruza was No. 3, Agieszka Radwanska was No. 4 and Maria Sharapova, the 2008 champion and finalist last year, was No. 5.
Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka moved back into the top 16 with her victory at the Brisbane International last week, her first title since 2013.
She finished last season at No. 22 but moved up the rankings with her title run in the Australian Open warmup tournament and was seeded No. 14 at Melbourne Park, meaning she avoids early-round encounters with the top-ranked players.
A win over 2014 U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori and a run to the semifinals at the Brisbane International lifted Australia’s Bernard Tomic to a No. 16 seeding in the men’s draw.
The Australian Open draw will take place on Friday.