Melbourne:Top-ranked Rafael Nadal will be the No. 1 seed at the Australian Open starting on Monday, ending Roger Federer's four-year run atop the Melbourne Park draw.
Nadal beat Federer in the French Open and Wimbledon finals last season. After winning the Olympic gold medal at Beijing in August, the 22-year-old Spaniard snapped Federer's record 237 consecutive weeks at No. 1.
He withdraw from the Masters Series event in Paris with tendinitis in his right knee and didn't play in the season-ending Masters Cup or Spain's Davis Cup final win over Argentina.
Federer was seeded second, followed by defending champion Novak Djokovic and Scottish player Andy Murray, who comes into the tournament on the back of wins at an Abu Dhabi exhibition and at the Qatar Open.
With Nikolay Davydenko withdrawing because of a heel injury, Frenchmen Jo-Wilfried Tsonga _ who beat Nadal in the semifinals here last year and then lost the final _ got the No. 5 seeding, with Gilles Simon at No. 6.
American Andy Roddick, the 2003 U.S. Open champion and a three-time semifinalist at the Australian Open, was seeded seventh.
Jelena Jankovic, one of six women to hold the No. 1 ranking last season, got the top seeding for the year's first major, with three-time Australian Open champion Serena Williams seeded second.
Russia's Dinara Safina and Elena Dementieva, the Olympic finalists, were seeded third and fourth, followed by 2008 Australian Open runner-up Ana Ivanovic and Wimbledon champion Venus Williams.
Defending champion Maria Sharapova has been sidelined since just after Wimbledon with an injured right shoulder and is not defending her title in Australia.
The draw for the Australian Open will be held Friday.