Melbourne: Somdev Devvarman, who is demanding better playing conditions in Davis Cup from the AITA, was drawn against Germany’s Bjorn Phau, on Sunday, for his opening match in the men’s singles event of the Australian Open.
It will be the first meeting between Somdev, whose ranking has plummeted to 551, and and the 78 th-ranked Phau.
If Somdev does put up a good show, it will do a world of good to his rankings that went down because of his absence from the circuit following a shoulder surgery.
In the men’s doubles, defending champions Leander Paes and Czech Radek Stepanek are seeded second and start their title defence against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson and Jonathan Erlich of Israel.
Mahesh Bhupathi and Canadian Daniel Nestor are seeded fifth and will take on Spaniards Pablo Andujar and Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, in their first round.
Rohan Bopanna and Rajeev Ram are seeded 12th and will meet local pair — Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios — first up.
Bhupathi-Nestor may clash against Bopanna-Ram in the third round if the draw goes as per seedings.
In the women’s doubles, Sania Mirza and her American partner Bethanie Mattek-Sands, seeded 10th, have been drawn against the Spanish team of Silvia Soler-Espinosa and Carla Suarez Navarro.