Britain's Laura Robson will cross paths with Melaine Oudin when the women's qualifying event for the Australian Open gets underway on Thursday.

29611 - Robson draws Oudin in Australian Open qualifying

Robson is ranked 33 places higher than her American opponent in the world standings but comes up against a tough prospect in the shape of Oudin, who reached the quarter-finals of the 2009 US Open.

Following the draw for the preliminary stages 17-year-old Robson, who is seeded 14th in the qualifying competition, told the Australian Open website: "It's always better to qualify. I've been lucky enough to get wildcards into Wimbledon for the last few years, but hopefully I won't need one this year. I'm going to play qualifying here and hopefully I'll do well.

"It was very pleasing [to win my first Grand Slam main draw matches last year], especially playing at the US Open because I qualified and then won my first-round match. That was a big deal for me.

"I made it to the final round of US Open qualifiers the last two years before that. Just to be able to qualify when we had to play two matches in one day because of [Hurricane Irene], was a bit of a nightmare, so I was really happy."

Feeling fit Robson is now ready to put her condition to the test following an injury-affected end to 2011, and continued: "I've started hitting with lots of different girls that are here this week, playing some points in practice, and hopefully by next week I'll be completely ready.

"All I can do is try my best, and work on the things in matches I've been doing in training and see how it goes."