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AO Doubles: Bryan Brothers and Williams Sisters Headline

Men's and women's doubles at the Australian Open will commence today with America's Bob and Mike Bryan and the Williams Sisters headlining each event.

By Erik Gudris

Bryan Brothers(January 15, 2013) -- A pair of successful siblings will aim for the 2013 Australian Open title as both men's and women's doubles commence today in Melbourne.

Top seeds Bob and Mike Bryan will hope to win their sixth title in Melbourne having come up just short in last year's finals to No. 2 seeds Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek who are also back in defense of their maiden Slam win as a team.

The Bryans will start against Oliver Marach of Austria and Horacio Zeballos of Argentina.

Many familiar names on the doubles court have switched partners since the end of last year resulting in some intriguing new teams. Sweden's Robert Lindstedt is now with Serbia's Nenad Zimonjic while Horia Tecau, Lindstedt's partner last year, is now playing with Max Mirnyi.

Plenty of singles players are also doing double duty over the fortnight. This includes Marcos Baghdatis with Grigor Dimitrov, Ryan Harrison with Matthew Ebden, David Marrero with Fernando Verdasco and Benoit Paire with Thomaz Bellucci.

Errani and Vinci Face Possible Clash with Serena and Venus.

Though last year saw plenty of fellow countrywomen partner together to get ready for the Summer Olympics, 2013 sees the return of some familiar teams as well as some unexpected alliances.

Italians Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, who lost in the finals last year, are back as the No. 1 seeds. Looming as a potential early round meeting for them are the Williams Sisters who are seeded No. 12 this year. Despite Serena Williams's recent on-court tumble during her first round singles match, she is still expected to compete in the doubles event.

The all Czech team of Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka, seeded No. 2, will be looking for their first ever Australian Open title. Waiting for them in a possible early round match are the reunited pair of No. 11 seeds Vania King and Yaroslava Shvedova.

Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond have gone their separate ways in the new season with Huber now paired with Spain's Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez while Raymond has teamed up with Russia's Maria Kirilenko. Nadia Petrova, who won Olympic bronze and the Year-End Championships with Kirilenko, is now playing with Katarina Srebotnik.

The most high profile pairing of singles players is that of Agnieszka Radwanska with Angelique Kerber. Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova, who partnered with Vera Zvonareva to win the the title last year, is back in defense but this time with Belgium's Yanina Wickmayer.
(Photo Credit: TN/Gudris)


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