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Serena Williams goes into the Australian Open next week looking for her sixth success in the competition and what could be her 18th Grand Slam title.

The world number one won two of the four major trophies last season after victories in the French Open in Paris and US Open at Flushing Meadows in New York.

In the early stages of 2013, Williams was suffering with an ankle injury which did not help her preparation for the Melbourne Park event. She lost in the quarter-finals to Sloane Stephens. Before her defeat, she had earlier been on a 34-match winning run, contributing to her favouritism in the bet365 odds.

In the build up to this year’s Australian Open, she has already claimed a title following wins over Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka in the Brisbane International.

The American will be aiming to go better than her tally of 11 tournament wins in 2013 during her latest campaign. Her first trophy of the calendar year came as she defeated Azarenka 6-4 7-5 in the final in Brisbane. She is now on a consecutive streak of 22 victories.

Despite a lot of previous success in Melbourne, in what is the opening Grand Slam of the season, she has not lifted the trophy there since 2010.

Serena’s sister Venus is also set for another appearance in the Australian Open. She has also won seven Grand Slam titles herself, none of them though, have come in this event.

The best Venus has done on the hard court event is finish runner-up in 2003 when she was beaten in the final by Serena 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 6-4.

Venus also surprised bet365 pundits by losing in the final of the recent ASB Classic in Auckland where she was beaten by Ana Ivanovic 6-2 5-7 6-4.
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