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Wozniacki gears up for roaring 2017

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 2/01/2017 Angelo Risso

© Mast Irham/Rex Images Danish tennis star Caroline Wozniacki is banking on this week's ASB Classic in Auckland to help her shake out the cobwebs for a 2017 grand slam tilt.

The 26-year-old Wozniacki endured a miserable 2016 campaign, exiting in the first round of the Australian Open and Wimbledon, but hit form with a semi-final exit at Flushing Meadows.

The 2015 Classic runner-up also won late-season tournaments in Japan and Hong Kong.

With the ankle and wrist injuries that blighted last year's tour behind her, Wozniacki said she felt fresh and ready for a shot at the Australian Open later this month.

But first she'd need to prepare in the right way, starting in Auckland.

"I've never won this tournament but I hope to just get a good start into the year, get the rust off and that's basically what I'm aiming for," the 19th-ranked Wozniacki told reporters.

"It's very chilled and it's a good atmosphere and crowd."

Wozniacki, typically the centre of attention wherever she goes, has flown in under the radar this week as the Williams sisters dominate headlines.

She said the change of pace hadn't changed anything for her, as she gears up for a first-round clash with American and close friend Nicole Gibbs.

The California-based Gibbs, 23, would be a tough proposition.

"It's going to be a good challenge to start the year, there aren't going to be a lot of free points," Wozniacki said.

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