Kiwi tennis star Michael Venus has spoken about his excitement at returning to the ASB Classic, having been seeded second for the doubles tournament.
Venus, 30, has enjoyed a stellar run in 2017, winning the French Open doubles crown at Roland Garros, while finishing runner up at the US Open at Flushing Meadows.
Speaking to 1 NEWS today, Venus couldn't hide his delight at returning to his hometown tournament.
"This is the tournament I look forward to the most throughout the year," he said.
"I still look back on all the other years I've played here. When you're walking out here and you get a big round of applause and see familiar faces in the stands, its gets you really excited too."
"Really looking forward to the opportunity ahead."
However, Venus said that he and partner South Africa's Raven Klassen will have their work cut out for them, despite their high seeding.
"To be able to be seeded here on top of that, it's great - but everyone in there's a good player. It's just a number next to our names."
"We're going to have to play well."