From the Age:
With the Australian Open beginning Monday, some of the tournament's main drawcards, including the men's and women's No. 1 seeds, held practice sessions of varying intensities on centre court yesterday.
Men's No. 1 Rafael Nadal, who will face Belgium's Christophe Rochus in the first round, had a relaxed session, focusing on his serve as workmen put the finishing touches on the stadium around him, banging and drilling advertising hoardings into place.
The tournament top seed, but on the third line of betting with most bookmakers behind perennial favourite Roger Federer and rising star Andy Murray, barely raised a sweat during the session which lasted short of an hour.
But Nadal also acted as gofer, briefly, fetching errant balls for Ana Ivanovic, who followed him on centre court.
Last year's Open finalist, and briefly the world's No. 1, held a solid session, playing long rallies against a male hitting partner, before spending time working on volleys and her serve.
She was followed onto Rod Laver Arena by the current women's No. 1, Jelena Jankovic, who showed no lingering effects of the flu which caused her to pull out of the Hong Kong Invitational last week, pushing herself through an intense workout.
Jankovic, whose ranking was derided by Serena Williams because of her lack of a major title, will play unseeded Austrian Yvonne Meusburger first up.
Lleyton Hewitt trained late in the day. Australia's best hope practised for an hour-and-a-half under the watchful eye of coach Tony Roche.
Outside the main court, Melbourne Park appears ready for the crush of up to 600,000 fans expected to visit over the fortnight of the tournament.
On Showcourt Three, Scot Murray, one of the tournament favourites and great hope of the underachieving nation which codified the game, had a relaxed hit-up ahead of his first-round clash with Andrei Pavel.
Aside from the occasional self-exhortation to try harder, hit better, or move quicker from Murray, it was all smiles in the 21-year-old's camp.