After skipping the last two months of the 2019 season, Serena Williams will start the New Year in Auckland for a second time.
In her first match as a 38-year-old, Serena will fellow Grand Slam winner Svetlana Kuznetsova. Serena could face Cristina McHale in the second round, Coco Gauff or Jelena Ostapenko in the quarters with Caroline Garcia or Amanda Anisimova in the semifinals.
The 10th-ranked Serena hasn’t played since her stunning loss to Bianca Andreescu in the US Open final. She has won 10 of 13 meetings with Kuznetsova.
In addition to Gauff and Anisimova, Serena will be joined by 2-time defending champion Julia Goerges, former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard, No. 2 seed Petra Martic and good friend Caroline Wozniacki who is set for retirement in Melbourne.
The 68th-ranked Gauff is just 15 years old and he open 2020 against Slovakian Viktoria Kuzmova.
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