'Pebbles Flintstone': Latest Serena Williams outfit divides fans

In recent years, grand slam tournaments have become synonymous with the latest fashion statement from Serena Williams.

'NASTY PIECE OF WORK': Australian Open player told off over weird ball girl request

‘SICK OF IT’: Ash Barty at centre of $71 million Australian Open drama

The levels of anticipation for the Australian Open are often matched by the level of interest in what new outfit the 23-time grand slam champion will be sporting.

At previous grand slams, Williams has dazzled in a tutu or announced herself to Melbourne Park in a green bodysuit.

Each and every time, social media has exploded as fans react to the American's newest get up.

Monday's opening day in Melbourne was no exception as the eighth seed took on Russian Anastasia Potapova on Rod Laver Arena.

Seen here, Serena Williams opened her Australian Open campaign in a new lavender dress.
Serena Williams' Australian Open outfit had viewers in a frenzy on social media. Pic: Getty

Williams stepped out onto the main stadium wearing a black-spotted lavender frilly dress, complete with matching high-top shoes and a series of necklaces to boot.

While the outfit got the tennis world talking, it was the American's racquet that did hers as she bulldozed her way through the opening set.

Potapova barely had time to settle herself before the 23-time grand slam champion raced through the first set without dropping a game.

The American ruthlessly blew away her Russian opponent early on, taking the opening stanza in 20 minutes.

Fans divided about new Williams outfit

As impressive as Williams' display was, however, it was the 38-year-old's outfit that had many viewers buzzing.

While many viewers absolutely loved Williams' outfit, others were not so flattering.

After copping a 6-0 bagel in the opening set, Potapova came out swinging in the second set, grabbing an early break to remind Williams that she wouldn't have it all her own way.

However, Williams regained what little composure she might have lost to break back against the 18-year-old.

From there, it was smooth sailing as the American wrapped up the second set 6-3 to claim victory in just 58 minutes and seal her passage to the second round.

Williams had endured a three-year title drought before winning in Auckland 10 days ago in front of daughter Olympia to underline her intentions to finally match Margaret Court's all-time record of 24 singles majors in Melbourne.

"It was amazing," Williams said.

"I hadn't been able to win as a mum s it was nice to be able to win a tournament with a two-year-old.

"It was really special for me - and hopefully for her."

Playing the Open for the 19th time, Williams has never lost in the first round.

The eighth-seeded American next plays Slovenian Tamara Zidansek on Wednesday for a place in the last 32.

With AAP