Australian Open 2014: 10 contenders to win in Melbourne, including Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal

The tournament in Melbourne begins on Monday - but who will be the last man standing?

Andy Murray will face Go Saeda of Japan in the first round of the Australian Open.

Australian Open 2014: Andy Murray to face Japan's Go Soeda as he is drawn in same half as Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic

Laura Robson will face Belgium's Kirsten Flipkens in the women's draw

The Sport Matrix: Friday 10 January

Defiant Allardyce: West Ham will ‘come out fighting’

Watson overcame nerves to defeat Australian Arina Rodionova in the first round

Australian Open 2014: Heather Watson and Johanna Konta progress in qualifying but Dan Evans' game disintegrates

Heather Watson and Johanna Konta posted victories in Australian Open qualifying, but there was disappointment for fellow British player Dan Evans.

Andy Murray: 'A player has to deliver, it's nothing to do with how much he cost'

Australian Open 2014: Andy Murray seeded fourth for Melbourne tournament

The British number one cannot face Novak Djokovic or Rafael Nadal until the semi-finals

Sex: A beneficial (and more enjoyable) calorie burning exercise

Study finds staying in a bed is an effective way of burning calories

The Sport Matrix: Monday 6 January 2014

Cook ‘desperate’ to lead the rebuilding of England side

Lleyton Hewitt (right) holds the winners trophy while Roger Federer holds the runner up prize in Brisbane

Brisbane International: Lleyton Hewitt rolls back years to stun Roger Federer and take title

There is probably as much chance of a home-grown male singles champion here at the Australian Open later this month as there is of Lleyton Hewitt arriving at Melbourne Park in one of the city trams, but at least the Adelaide-born former world No 1 will offer the prospect of some excitement for locals when the year’s first Grand Slam tournament begins in seven days’ time.

Rafael Nadal avoids a shock against autograph-hunting German Peter Gojowczyk

When Peter Gojowczyk, the world No 162, won 12 of the first 13 points of his Qatar ExxonMobile Open semi-final against Rafael Nadal here last night nervous statisticians were probably starting to thumb through their record books, wondering when the Spaniard had last lost to an opponent more lowly-ranked than the 24-year-old German.

McIlroy in Sydney at the beginning of December. The former world No 1 believes he has his mojo back

Rory McIlroy targets two major wins in 2014

Former world No 1 Rory McIlroy believes he has his mojo back and wants to win two majors this year.

Back to reality: The news you missed over Christmas

Did Christmas presents take precedent over world events during the festive period? Here is a quick round up of the top news stories from the past week

Rory McIlroy & Caroline Wozniacki, sport’s golden couple
Andy Murray reacts during his defeat to Florian Mayer

Qatar Open: Defeated Andy Murray short of practice ahead of Australian Open

Briton suffered the loss in the second round in Doha

Andy Murray took only 37 minutes to beat Mousa Zayed 6-0, 6-0 in the Qatar Open

Qatar Open: Andy Murray powers past Mousa Zayed in 37 minutes in return to competitive action

But fellow Briton Dan Evans lost to Latvia's Ernests Gulbis

Rory McIlroy will be hoping for a far better year after a miserable 2013

Why 2014 promises to be glorious for Andy Murray in Melbourne, Rory McIlroy at the Masters, Katie Summerhayes in Sochi and Jos Buttler behind the stumps

Fate is calling Murray and Australia offers his best shot at a third Grand Slam win

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War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

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Ackroyd has devoted his literary career to chronicling the capital and its characters. He tells John Walsh why he chose the master of suspense as his latest subject
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Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

For every box-office smash in Ryan Reynolds' Hollywood career, there's always been a misconceived let-down. It's time for a rethink and a reboot, the actor tells James Mottram
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The UK horticulture industry is facing a skills crisis - but Great Dixter aims to change all that

UK horticulture industry facing skills crisis

Great Dixter manor house in East Sussex is encouraging people to work in the industry by offering three scholarships a year to students, as well as generous placements
Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head

Hack Circus: Technology, art and learning

Hack Circus aims to turn the rule-abiding approach of TED talks on its head. Rhodri Marsden meets mistress of ceremonies Leila Johnston
Sevenoaks is split over much-delayed decision on controversial grammar school annexe

Sevenoaks split over grammar school annexe

If Weald of Kent Grammar School is given the go-ahead for an annexe in leafy Sevenoaks, it will be the first selective state school to open in 50 years
10 best compact cameras

A look through the lens: 10 best compact cameras

If your smartphone won’t quite cut it, it’s time to invest in a new portable gadget
Paul Scholes column: Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now

Paul Scholes column

Ross Barkley played well against Italy but he must build on that. His time to step up and seize that England No 10 shirt is now
Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

The former player on how she is finding time to coach both Manchester Thunder in the Superleague and England in this year's World Cup
General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

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Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

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The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?