Azarenka reveals depression

The former world number one was hampered by knee and foot injuries throughout the year, restricting her to just 24 matches.

As a result here ranking plummeted, and she ended the year ranked a lowly 35th. While Azarenka insists she is not fazed too much by the numbers, she concedes that she fought a tough mental battle during her time on the sidelines.

"Well, I don't want to sound like a mental person, but, yeah, I was [depressed]," she told reporters in Brisbane. 

"It's just when you are in those moments it's difficult to realise that, because you think you're fine and you're trying to kind-of command your mind that you're OK, but it's really just going through that and experiencing that and really admitting it to yourself.

"I think the first time I admitted that I wasn't OK, it made me feel a little bit better, and being an athlete I think it's not a weakness to admit that, because we're all human, and we all go through difficult situations and it's OK to be that way.

"The important thing, and what's exciting, is how you come out of it; that's what shows a strong personality, a strong character, because it's a challenge of life. It's more than just tennis, it's life challenges."

A two-time Australian Open champion, the 25-year-old heads to Melbourne Park without a seeding this year, but she is not letting that worry her.

"The important thing is to go out there and play, seeded or unseeded. What's important is to get ready, prepare, control what you can control, and that's what I'm gonna do," she asserted.

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