Serena Williams, Andy Murray to compete in Australian Open

Roger Federer won the men's singles title at Melbourne Park in January

Tennis great and former world number one Williams celebrated the birth of her first child Alexis Olympia Ohanian Jr - who has the initials of the Australian Open - on September 1, having been pregnant when she won her 23rd grand slam at the year's first major in January.

"She wants to come back in 2018 and defend her title", Tiley said.

"I'm very happy to confirm that all the top players will be back in Melbourne in January", Tiley said.

Including her seven Australian Open titles, Williams has won a total of 23 Grand Slam singles titles, more than anyone else in the Open-era and one shy to tie the record held by Australian Margaret Court, who coincidentally, won three of her titles after returning from giving birth to a son in 1973.

"Serena is a truly remarkable athlete and she's hasn't ruled out a return to the Australian Open. It will be up to her as far as where she is with her fitness".

Serena beat Venus in the final in 2017 while pregnant but it will take an even more incredible effort for her to win the first Slam of 2018.

"Bernie always tends to pick it up toward the end of the season and do well leading into the year so hopefully he will be able to do that", Tiley said.

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'If anyone can do it, she can and I'm certainly not counting her out of a return come January'.

Williams' stellar year saw her return to the world top five for the first time since 2011, the year she was diagnosed with strength-sapping Sjogren's Syndrome.

The 2018 Australian Open, the 30th Australian Open to be held in Melbourne, will be the richest in the tournament's history with the total prize pool increased 10 percent to 42 million US dollars.

Tiley said the winners' prizemoney had broken a "barrier" that "has not been done by any other grand slam or any other event".

"Serena will be back", Tiley said.

The British number one has been sidelined since limping out of Wimbledon with a hip injury in July and he is unlikely to play again this year.

Tennis fans might have extra reason to tune into the Australian Open next year.

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