The Must-See Matchups On Australian Open Day One

The biggest tennis matches of the tournament's opening day.

James Duckworth (AUS) v 2-Rafael Nadal (ESP)

Duckworth, winning his place in the draw through last month's wildcard playoff tournament, returns for a seventh Australian Open appearance. It is likely to be short after drawing the world number two in the first round; the 26-year-old hasn't beaten a top-50 player in three years.

Rafael Nadal of Spain in action during a practice session (AAP Image/Lukas Coch)

But the Sydneysider will at least enjoy strong support on Rod Laver Arena and will give himself every chance after overcoming injuries that had ruined his 2017 and 2018 seasons.

Astra Sharma (AUS) v Priscilla Hon (AUS)

At least one Australian will reach the second round at Melbourne Park thanks to this pairing of happy-to-be-here locals. Sharma, a 23-year-old from Western Australia, is competing in her first grand slam after defeating three higher-ranked Russians including former Wimbledon finalist Vera Zvonareva in qualifying. Brisbane-based Hon returns to the Open as a wildcard entry three years after her first effort.

22-Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) v Andy Murray (GBR)

The tears and tributes have flowed for Sir Andy Murray since the well-loved Scot's announcement of a looming retirement due to hip issues.

(AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

The five-time Australian Open runner-up is playing through the pain and wants to get to Wimbledon for a farewell appearance but this meeting with the consistent Spaniard might be his last outing. For as long as he lasts, Murray will be feted by all and sundry.

15-Ashleigh Barty (AUS) v Luksika Kumkhum (THA)

Australia's chief singles hope begins her campaign against Kumkhum, who had surprised at Melbourne Park last year by beating Belinda Bencic and reaching the third round. The pair have met at a grand slam before: the Thai beat Barty in 2016 Wimbledon qualifying.

Ashleigh Barty of Australia during her match against Petra Kvitova of Czechoslovakia at the Sydney International tennis tournament (AAP Image/Craig Golding)

Since then, Barty has blossomed into Australia's brightest female prospect since grand-slam winner Sam Stosur. Anything other than an easy win would shock.

6-Marin Cilic (CRO) v Bernard Tomic (AUS)

After enduring the humiliations of a failed 2018 qualifying mission, Tomic has quietly put in the hard yards to return to the world's top 100 and the Australian Open main draw in 2019. His reward is a meeting with last year's finalist.

Tomic and Cilic have met before at the Australian Open. In 2010, the Queenslander let slip a two-sets-to-one advantage to lose in five sets.

3-Caroline Wozniacki (DEN) v Alison van Uytvanck (BEL)

The popular Dane returns to Melbourne Park as a grand-slam champion and, for the first time, will contend with the pressure of defending a major. Wozniacki's first assignment is Belgian van Uytvanck, who has never won a match at the Australian Open in four attempts.

Caroline Wozniacki  (EPA/RITCHIE B. TONGO)

But, she climbed into the world's top 50 last year after winning the Budapest Open. Van Uytvanck knocked Garbine Muguruza out of last year's Wimbledon but Wozniacki's class should prevail.