Surprise! Look what Sharapova found in the laundry

MELBOURNE -- The Australian Open is only two days away and, needless to say, some of the top players are feeling optimistic, if not downright jovial.

And for others, maybe a little weirded out.

Here's a roundup of media day at Melbourne Park on Saturday.

Maria Sharapova

Sharapova might have faith in her tennis game heading into the Aussie Open, but she doesn't appear to have as much confidence in the current laundry situation.

"Yeah, I actually just returned a pair of underwear that wasn't mine like 45 minutes ago," Sharapova said, then elaborating that "it was a female pair of underwear, not male. It was leopard. ... I've lost a lot of great things in the laundry. I lost a great T-shirt in Brisbane 10 days ago."

Although an important piece of Sharapova's attire disappeared, her game looks like it's on the verge of a major comeback.

"Yeah, I feel really good," the four-time major winner said. "Got to Melbourne earlier than I wanted to. But it gave me a chance to practice here this week. Had great days on a lot of the courts."

Health has been the central theme for Sharapova in recent years. Last season, she missed most of the hard-court swing with a leg injury, and then after a three-month hiatus, she came back only to hurt her arm -- an ailment that also forced her to pull out of Brisbane a week ago.

"Yeah, it's tricky," Sharapova said. "Three days before the tournament, you feel healthy. The something happens. All of a sudden you can't compete in the tournament. Things change very fast. That's when you have to have the right mindset and an even better outlook."

Lleyton Hewitt

For the 20th and final time, Hewitt will compete at the Australian Open.

A brash, if not contentious, player in his younger years, Hewitt has become a mentor to his fellow Aussie players. Fittingly, it could be one of his countrymen who ends Hewitt's career.

He takes on James Duckworth, a player ranked No. 134 but who has some massive weapons at his disposal.

"He has a good serve, good forehand," Hewitt said. "Gets a lot of kick off the court as well. He's a different kind of player."

Right before the Federer era began, Hewitt was the player to beat, winning two Grand Slams in the early 2000s. Federer, of course, took the game to a new level and earned profound respect from fellow players, including Hewitt.

"What he's done is amazing," Hewitt said. "To see how well he's still playing now, it's incredible. He's a great ambassador for our sport."

Serena Williams

One of the things that makes Serena so great is her unwavering confidence, no matter what she is feeling mentally or physically. The world No. 1 reiterated her resolve Saturday.

"No, I feel fine," she said, when asked whether nerves would play a factor in the season's opening Slam. "Honestly, I don't have anything to prove. I have nothing to lose. I can only gain."

But if we're looking for a reason to feel down on Serena, the scoreboard hasn't always favored her here. She has won the Aussie just once in the past five years.

But history means nothing -- not a thing -- as far as Serena is concerned.

Answering a question to summarize her 2015 season, Serena succinctly responded, "I don't look back."

Victoria Azarenka

Azarenka won the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013 but was unseeded here last year after suffering foot and knee injuries in 2014. She's healthy and back on track this year, though. She won Brisbane last week and is the second favorite here behind Serena.

She said she is excited about her prospects but is not thinking much about her chances.

"I try to live in the moment. Carpe Diem," Azarenka said.

In addition to her tennis talent, Azarenka has an interest in film, and recently produced this video of her training at night in Minsk. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYrCoI4X4SI

"The idea came to me while I was home in Belarus," Azarenka said. "Just saw an image in front of me. I wanted to do something different. Show my creative side.''

Roger Federer

First things first: Federer addressed his health after a lingering cough, which slowed him a bit in the opening week of the season.

Federer, who still made the final of the Brisbane International before falling to Milos Raonic, said, "Cough's gone. The cold's 90 percent gone. I'm happy. The last couple days I've been able to practice normally. Yeah, no, I'm relieved that since Thursday now I'm better."

Federer is still looking for his first Grand Slam title since Wimbledon in 2012. He played brilliantly last season, reaching the final at the All England Club and the US Open before running into Novak Djokovic in the final both times.

But even at 34, Federer said he's still willing to experiment with his game, especially under new coach Ivan Ljubicic.

"I would think the Australian Open is the one where players come in maybe most inspired," Federer said. "It's always been my most consistent Slam, maybe until last year. I have always played very well here."

Rafael Nadal

The Australian Open is the only Slam that Nadal hasn't won twice. But after his worst season in more than a decade, in which he failed to make a major final, Nadal said he has nothing but "good feelings" heading into the season's opening Slam.

Perhaps the most intriguing first-round match of the tournament, Nadal takes on talented countryman Fernando Verdasco on Tuesday.

Andy Murray

Andy Murray reiterated that if his wife, Kim, goes into labor with their first child early -- the baby is expected in February -- he will leave the Australian Open to be with her. Even if that means withdrawing from the final.

"For me, my child is more important to me," Murray said. "And my wife is more important to me than a tennis match.''

He says the upcoming birth is not a distraction on the court, though it is a new learning experience "which is always good."

Whatever happens, he will be taking needed time off after this tournament, given that the Davis Cup competition kept him playing late into 2015.

"When I finish here, I'm going to be home for four or five weeks. I'll take some time to rest and recover."