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Australian Open

The Australian Open is the first of the four grand slam tournaments played every year ,internationally. The other three are in order of competition:-

  1. The French Open (Roland Garros)
  2. Wimbledon
  3. The US Open.

Founded in 1905 it has over the years been played at seven different venues including twice in New Zealand. In 1972 Tennis Australia decided to keep the tournament in one city, and as Melbourne in the past had attracted the biggest patronage, it was there a new stadium was constructed in time for the 1988 tournament. Since 1987 the tournament is played from mid January and lasts about two weeks. Some of the top players have decried the playing of this tournament so soon after the Christmas break as it gives them little time to get match fit, and during this time of the year in Melbourne, temperatures can soar, so Tennis Australia when building the stadium took this into account and have a retractable roof over the main court, not so much for rain but to protect players and spectators from the torrid heat.

The court surface is an acrylic material known as 'Plexicushion Prestige', and has similar properties to the 'Deco Turf' used at Flushing Meadows in the US, so also tends to assist the serve and volley players.

There are five divisions in this tournament:-

  • Mens singles
  • Ladies singles
  • Mens doubles
  • Ladies doubles
  • Mixed doubles
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