Former world number one Novak Djokovic is hoping that a winning return to tennis can help in his preparations for a seventh Australian Open title.
The Serbian ace started the year as the number two-ranked player in the world behind Andy Murray as he began his campaign with a win over the Briton to triumph in Doha.
However, things started to go downhill for Djokovic as poor performances and injuries hindered his year, winning just two ATP titles, having previously won at least six titles every year since 2010.
His last appearance came at Wimbledon where he retired early on in his quarter-final match with Tomas Berdych due to an elbow injury. He later announced that he would take time off until the new season to heal as he dropped to 16th in the world rankings.
However, Djokovic is now set to return for the first time since July at the Mubadala World Tennis Championships exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi, which takes place from 28-30 December.
Looking to win the event for the fourth time, the 30-year-old is excited to be back on court again, and having been confirmed for the 2018 Australian Open, is hoping that a win in Abu Dhabi will help prepare him for Melbourne Park.
"It is always an honour to play in Abu Dhabi and I can't wait to get back on court again," Djokovic said, as quoted by Sport360.
"This tournament will offer me the perfect opportunity to start my preparation for the Australian Open."
Djokovic could also face an early test upon his return as both the Serbian and world number one Rafael Nadal have a bye into the semi-finals of the event and could face each other in the final.