At the Australian Open today

At the U.S. Open, Andre Agassi wasn't too concerned about fellow American Taylor Dent. That changed after they met in the fourth round. Although Dent retired from the match with an injury, Agassi's attitude had changed.

"I was surprised at how frustrating he was making it for me to hold," Agassi said afterward.

Dent is going to do his best to make things frustrating for Andy Roddick today in what is sure to be a hard-serving battle. Both have recorded serves over 144 mph in competition.

Although Roddick is the No. 1 player in the world, it's Dent who might have the crowd advantage. His father, Phil Dent, is Australian and reached the final at the Aussie Open in 1976.

Potential show stoppers

  • Marathon man squares off against mercurial man as Todd Martin and Marat Safin open the day's matches on Rod Laver Arena. Martin already has played one five-set match and his second-round match went to three tiebreaks. Safin already has earned one code violation for smashing his racket in the second round.

  • Laura Granville is having her best Australian Open ever by reaching the third round. Unfortunately, she next faces fellow American Lindsay Davenport. The two have never played each other before.

  • After being hospitalized with a brain lesion last fall, Leander Paes returns with Martina Navratilova to defend their mixed doubles title at the Aussie. Paes helped Navratilova make history with their mixed doubles win at Wimbledon last summer. The pair will play on Rod Laver Arena following Roddick and Dent.

  • Agassi won't be taking Tomas Enqvist for granted. They split their past four matches -- beginning in 1999 -- all on hard court.

  • It's at this point in the tournament that things only get more difficult. No. 32 Robby Ginepri won't need to be told that. He'll play Nicolas Escude for the first time in his career in the third round. Escude comes into the tournament having won the title in Doha amidst a tough field. If Ginepri survives, he'll face either former Aussie Open semifinalist Sebastien Grosjean or Dominik Hrbaty, who won titles in Adelaide and Auckland to start off 2004.

    Cynthia Faulkner is the tennis editor for ESPN.com.