Every die-hard tennis fan’s first favourite tennis tournament of the year, the Australian Open, is hardly missed by those who are travelling across Australia. Here are some interesting facts about this world famous tennis tournament that you should not miss out on reading!
What is the Australian Open?
The globe-spanning Australian Open is a tennis tournament that is held on the last fortnight of the month of January every year. Welcoming many tennis enthusiasts and industry aficionados from all over the world, the Australian Open was first held in 1905. The tournament is held in the Melbourne Park in Melbourne. This popular tournament is the first of the four tennis events that are considered as Grand Slam; the others being the US Open, Wimbledon and French Open. The event features women’s singles, men’s singles, and junior’s championships along with the famous wheelchair legends.
Many are seen rallying in Melbourne around the latter part of every January to witness their favourite tennis stars play at the Australian Open. The tournament usually records higher numbers than the rival event, US Open. The Australian Open tickets were purchased by around 700, 000 fans in the 2017 edition and the management of the tournament expects the numbers to be boost this year.
Interesting Facts about the Australian Open
The Australian Open is organized and managed by Tennis Australia which was previously known as the Lawn Tennis Association of Australia (LTAA). And the tournament was declared as a major championship until 1924 and it was declared by the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF).
Many of the professional and popular players in the first few editions happened to miss out on participating in the tournament due to the low prize money and inconvenience of travelling across the continent and across the oceans.
A change of venue that took place in the year 1988 resulted in the change of the surface of the court; from a grass court to a hard court which is known as Rebound Ace. And after two decades being used in the Australian Open, the court was replaced by a cushioned, acrylic surface called the Plexicushion Prestige. And only the famous Serena Williams and Roger Federer have the chance to play on both of these courts.
History of the Tournament
The first ever tournament of Australian Open that was held in 1905 was played at the Warehouseman’s Cricket Ground located in Melbourne which is now known as the Albert Reserve Tennis Centre. Although the tournament is known as the Australian Open nowadays, it was first called Australasian Championships.
Since the first edition in 1905, the tournament has been held in five Australian locations and two New Zealand locations: 55 times in Melbourne, 17 times in Sydney, 14 Adelaide, 7 times in Brisbane and three times in Perth.
Due to the remote geographic location of Australia there were less numbers of foreign players in the tournament during the outset. The first few tennis players were said to have arrived in boats from Europe to participate in the games.