Tomljanovic's Australian Open blow

Ajla Tomljanovic has suffered Australian Open heartbreak before the Melbourne major has even started, missing a precious seeding by one week and two rankings spots.

An untimely knee niggle that forced Tomljanovic's withdrawal from last week's United Cup has come back to haunt the Australian No.1 - and threatens to cruel her Open dream.

Tomljanovic dropped two positions in the rankings this week to world No.35, down from a career-high world No.33 after her stellar 2022 season.

With former world No.1 Simona Halep not contesting the Open, Tomljanovic would have nabbed a seeding had she won a singles match at the new mixed teams' event.

A coveted first-time grand slam seeding would have ensured Tomljanovic couldn't possibly strike a higher-ranked rival until at least round three.

She's now in danger of running into a heavyweight - and potentially even world No.1 Iga Swiatek in the first round - when the Open draw is conducted at Melbourne Park on Thursday.

The setback is especially frustrating after Tomljanovic last year became the first Australian female to reach the Wimbledon and US Open quarter-finals since the great Evonne Goolagong Cawley in 1979.

Integral also in leading Australia to the 2022 Billie Jean King Cup final, Tomljanovic has done a superb job filling the nigh-on impossible shoes of Ash Barty as Australia's new women's No.1.

The retired reigning Australian Open champion told AAP before Tomjanovic's seedings setback that the 29-year-old loomed as a serious title contender in Melbourne.

"And that's the genuine feeling among the players," Barty said.

"Certainly when I played Ajla, I knew I had to be at my absolute very best or she'd completely roll me.

"And she's got that respect from everyone."

Tomljanovic took the opening set of a pulsating Wimbledon quarter-final against eventual champion Elena Rybakina in July before also losing a high-quality US Open last-eight encounter to world No.2 Ons Jabeur.

While Tomljanovic has missed out, fellow Australians Nick Kyrgios and Alex de Minaur have crucially been seeded 20th and 23rd respectively in the men's singles.

That gives Kyrgios and de Minaur all-important protection against top-eight players until at least the last 16 of the season's first grand slam starting on Monday.

Defending champion Rafael Nadal is the men's top seed in the absence of injured world No.1 Carlos Alcaraz, with nine-time winner Novak Djokovic named fourth seed on Wednesday.

Swiatek is the women's top seed as the Pole looks to add the Australian Open crown to the French and US Open titles she already holds.

Australian Open seedings:

MEN

1. Rafael Nadal (ESP)

2. Casper Ruud (NOR)

3. Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE)

4. Novak Djokovic (SRB)

5. Andrey Rublev (N/A)

6. Felix Auger-Aliassime (CAN)

7.Daniil Medvedev (N/A)

8. Taylor Fritz (USA)

9. Holger Rune (DEN)

10. Hubert Hurkacz (POL)

11. Cameron Norrie (GBR)

12. Alexander Zverev (GER)

13. Matteo Berrettini (ITA)

14. Pablo Carreno Busta (ESP)

15. Jannik Sinner (ITA)

16. Frances Tiafoe (USA)

17. Marin Cilic (CRO)

18. Lorenzo Musetti (ITA)

19. Karen Khachanov (N/A)

20. Nick Kyrgios (AUS)

21. Denis Shapovalov (CAN)

22. Borna Coric (CRO)

23. Alex de Minaur (AUS)

24. Diego Schwartzman (ARG)

25. Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP)

26. Daniel Evans (GBR)

27. Miomir Kecmanovic (SRB)

28. Grigor Dimitrov (BUL)

29. Francisco Cerundolo (ARG)

30. Sebastian Korda (USA)

31. Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (ESP)

32. Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN)

WOMEN

1. Iga Swiatek (POL)

2. Ons Jabeur (TUN)

3. Jessica Pegula (USA)

4. Caroline Garcia (FRA)

5. Aryna Sabalenka (N/A)

6. Maria Sakkari (GRE)

7. Coco Gauff (USA)

8. Daria Kasatkina (N/A)

9. Veronika Kudermetova (N/A)

10. Madison Keys (USA)

11. Paula Badosa (ESP)

12. Belinda Bencic (SUI)

13. Danielle Collins (USA)

14. Beatriz Haddad Maia (BRA)

15. Petra Kvitova (CZE)

16. Anett Kontaveit (EST)

17. Jelena Ostapenko (LAT)

18. Liudmila Samsonova (N/A)

19. Ekaterina Alexandrova (N/A)

20. Barbora Krejcikova (CZE)

21. Martina Trevisan (ITA)

22. Elena Rybakina (KAZ)

23. Shuai Zhang (CHN)

24. Victoria Azarenka (N/A)

25. Marie Bouzkova (CZE)

26. Elise Mertens (BEL)

27. Irina-Camelia Begu (ROM)

28. Amanda Anisimova (USA)

29. Qinwen Zheng (CHN)

30. Karolina Pliskova (CZE)

31. Kaia Kanepi (EST)

32. Jil Teichmann (SUI)