MELBOURNE Carlos Rodon Jersey , Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- Five-time Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic is in the box seat to defend his 2015 crown, after being handed a favorable draw for the 2016 tournament on Friday.
Djokovic managed to avoid his Australian Open nemesis Andy Murray on his side of the draw, as well as 2014 winner Stan Wawrinka and 2009 champion Rafael Nadal. His draw does feature, however, a potential quarterfinal against Japanese up-and-comer Kei Nishikori and a semi-final against Roger Federer.
Nadal will also relive the epic 2010 semi-final with countryman Fernando Verdasco when they clash in the first round, while 5th seen Federer's hopes could be dashed in the second round by unpredictable Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov. If he manages to win that however, the Swiss legend could also have to face Bulgarian 27th see, Grigor Dimitrov in the third round.