A 250-level tournament doesn't normally attract the brightest stars on tour, however Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are two big headliners in the ATP Doha 2017 draw. The tournament, which is based in Qatar, runs from January 2nd to the 7th, and it's a part of the lead up to the 2017 Australian Open. Murray and Djokovic, if they faced one another, could only meet in the final in Doha. Between the two, it's the Serb that appears to have the easier path.

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Djokovic opens season against Struff

Djokovic starts with a match against Germany's Jan-Lennard Struff, one that should be straight forward for the World No. 2. Florian Mayer, another German, is in Djokovic's micro-section, however it has been a few years now since we've seen Mayer play his best tennis. He did have a flash-in-the-pan title run last season, but the level of tennis wasn't sustainable for him afterward. The seeded player in Djokovic's quarter is Marcos Baghdatis, a talented player but one that rarely beats the top five anymore.

In the semis, Djokovic might face David Goffin, an in-form player but one that might be tired after making the Abu Dhabi final. By most measures, the draw to the final certainly is not that difficult, as one would expect in such a low-tiered tournament.

Andy Murray opens against Chardy

Murray, who lost to Goffin in Abu Dhabi, has a tricky match against Jeremy Chardy in the first round. Their half of the draw is loaded with the tough outs in the tournament, namely Philipp Kohlschreiber, Tomas Berdych, and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

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Jiri Vesely is also on the No. 1 seed's side of the tournament as is Spaniard Nicolas Almagro. Those are a couple dangerous non-seeded floaters.

The stakes are small in Doha when it comes to ranking points and prize money, at least for the World No. 1 and No. 2. However, preparation time for the Australian Open is at a premium right now with ATP Brisbane going on in Australian too. The top players generally do not like to play in the week immediately before a Grand Slam tournament so that makes this upcoming week the one to get some matches in.

It's very hard to look past Djokovic on the bottom of the draw while the top half is a little more open.

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