Kiwis Michael Venus and Marcus Daniell have received mixed draws for the US Tennis Open in New York next week.
The doubles draw took place on Saturday morning with Venus, the world number 11, and his Australian partner John Peers unseeded, but avoiding a seeded pairing.
Usually a Grand Slam doubles draw has 64 teams but due to Covid-19 it has been reduced to 32 teams, meaning Venus and Peers are unseeded.
They face Americans Nicholas Monroe and Nathaniel Lammons in the first round. Monroe is ranked 84th and Lammons 107.
Win that match and the antipodean combination could come up against second seeds Lukasz Kubot from Poland and Brazil's Marcelo Melo.
Meanwhile, it's a difficult draw for New Zealand's Marcus Daniell and his Austrian partner Philipp Oswald.
The pair have had very little practice together in the last six months since the Covid-19 pandemic shut down professional tennis and weren't in the field for this week's Cincinnati Masters.
Daniell has been in the US Open bubble for a week and has spent time getting used to the conditions in New York.
Daniell and Oswald face 7th seeded South African Raven Klaasen (Venus's former partner) and Austrian Oliver Marach in the first round at Flushing Meadows.
Novak Djokovic plays down Federer, Nadal withdrawals as draw revealed
The US Open draw has been released but despite men's World No. 1 Novak Djokovic playing down the absences, the missing players have left a massive hole.
As of writing, there were 14 of the top men's players in the world and 27 women's stars who have chosen to sit out the first Grand Slam of the Covid-19 era.
Australian world No. 1 Ashleigh Barty, former US Open champion Sam Stosur, World No. 40 Nick Kyrgios and rising star Alexei Popyrin are the big outs for Australia.
But the big outs in the mens' draw have dominated the discussion with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer officially out.
Since 2004, there have been only seven different champions in the US Open, with Federer winning five, Nadal four and Djokovic three, while Juan Martin del Potro, Andy Murray, Marin Cilic and Stan Wawrinka have each won one.
Only Djokovic, Cilic and Murray are playing in the 2020 edition of the tournament.
Djokovic has been on the offence since coming down with COVID-19 at the Adria Tour exhibition tournament he organised to raise money for charity, with the 17-time Grand Slam winner heavily criticised for his action.
But speaking ahead of the Western and Southern Open tournament before the US Open, Djokovic played down the absences.
"It's bound to be weird that Federer and Nadal aren't here …" Djokovic said.
"They will be missed, no doubt, because they are legends of our sport. But apart from Federer, Nadal and Wawrinka, all the best players are there.
"It would be disrespectful to all the other players to say that I have a better chance without Roger and Rafa. (Dominic) Thiem, (Alexander) Zverev, (Stefanos) Tsitsipas, (Daniil) Medvedev, these guys are as strong as the three of us.
"Anyone can win, even more after six months without the tour. We don't really know how we're going to feel on the court."
But none of the top ten seeds have won a Grand Slam title - other than Djokovic.
On the women's side of the draw, defending champion Bianca Andreescu is out of the tournament but the seedings have been skewered by the absence of six of the top 10 players in the world.
It sees 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams, who is ranked ninth in the world, seeded three for the tournament, while world No. 46 Rebecca Peterson from Sweden is the 32nd and final seeded player in the women's draw.
- with News.com.au