Topics:  australian open, brisbane international, lleyton hewitt, tennis

Hewitt to serve up fierce game at Brisbane International

HE might be turning 32 in February, but Lleyton Hewitt says he feels younger than he did before last year's Australian Open.

Speaking after a practise session yesterday ahead of the Brisbane International, the former world No.1 said there was no sign of the foot injury that plagued his preparation for the Australian tournaments last summer.

"Last year was really tough coming in. I couldn't practice nearly as much as I wanted to and I couldn't do the off-court work either, which was frustrating," Hewitt said.

"This year, so far, it's been fantastic. The foot has held up extremely well, the rest of the body's holding up well, so we'll see what happens.

"I certainly feel younger than I did 12 months ago ... I don't need injections every day to go out there."

Hewitt, now ranked 83 in the world after slipping as low as 233 this year, said not only did he want to play in the next two Australian Opens, and at Wimbledon, he wanted one more shot at his beloved Davis Cup.

"I don't really set myself goals. It's about getting my body right for the grand slams," he said.

"For me, the most important tournaments are the Australian Open and Wimbledon.

"But I'd love nothing more than to have a crack at the Davis Cup in 2014. I'd love to play another world group tie before I finish my career."

With his body back in shape, Hewitt said he would play in the Brisbane International for the first time before completing his preparation for the Australian Open in the Kooyong Classic in Melbourne.



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