Williamses top list of Aussie contenders

A fit and resolute Serena Williams might be the favorite among a genuinely competitive field to win the Australian Open. Plus, she thrives in odd-numbered years.

Updated: January 14, 2009, 10:55 AM ET
By Kamakshi Tandon | Special to ESPN.com

It's no secret that there's little order and predictability at the top of women's tennis these days. Five different players have won the past five Grand Slams, and five different players (not even the exact same five) have been No. 1 in the past year.

At such times, the usual methods of tournament forecasting -- recent form, past success -- tend to give way to more unorthodox approaches. Any sign or pattern which might serve as a portent of the future will do. Serena Williams, ...

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