12 Jan 2001: Pete Sampras from the USA plays a backhand volley in his match against Nicolas Keifer from Germany, during the Colonial Classic played at Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club, Melbourne, Australia  Mandatory Credit: Darrin Braybrook/ALLSPORT

Lay of the (foreign) land

Posted on December 15, 2017

 The courts of the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club will be packed with top international and national players for the Priceline Pharmacy Kooyong Classic in January.

Want to know the one’s to watch? We get to the bottom of the ball bucket on the hot favourites flying in for this year’s event.

Pablo Carreno Busta

The 26-year-old Spaniard has won 3 ATP singles titles and is currently ranked 10. Before hitting the Australian Open, Carreno Busta sees the Kooyong Classic as the perfect lead in event and preparation for the Grand Slam.

Game face on for the Kooyong Classic
Image Source: Getty Images

David Goffin

Affectionately referred to as “LeGoff”, the big hitter from Belgium is no stranger to the Kooyong Classic. Goffin, is a 2 time winner of the event and the defending champion. With a current world ranking of 7, can LeGoff ace his way to the top again?

Richard Gasquet

With a backhand considered one of the world’s best, Gasquet has won 14 ATP titles, been a Wimbledon semifinalist twice as well as a semifinalist at the US Open. Starting out early, the French 31 year old was a World Junior Champion, the youngest player ever to qualify for an ATP Masters 1000 event at the ripe age of 15 and the second youngest to qualify for a Grand Slam.

Kevin Anderson

South African native Anderson will make his Kooyong Classic debut in 2018. With a current world ranking of 14, Anderson has spent a decade in professional tennis with 3 ATP single title wins under his sweatbands.

Dominic Thiem

Looking forward to playing on the historic grounds of the Kooyong grass, the “Dominator” and current world number 5 has won 8 ATP singles titles. A lover of the forehand on clay surface, Thiem will certainly be one to watch at the Spiritual Home of Australian Tennis. As a former 2-time French Open semifinalist, Thiem has celebrated wins over Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray.

Thiem, red hot ready
Image Source: Getty Images

Marin Cilic

Sound familiar? You may remember Cilic as a Wimbledon finalist earlier this year. A former US Open Champion (2014), the Croatian holds 17 ATP titles and the current 6th spot in world rankings.

Federer and Cilic hit the court at Wimbledon earlier this year
Image Source: Getty Images

With one of the strongest fields since the event’s inception, it will be hard to take our eyes off the court.

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