Australian Open

2007 Schools Wikipedia Selection. Related subjects: Sports events

Australian Open
Grand Slams

The Australian Open is the first of the world's four Grand Slam tennis tournaments, held each January at Melbourne Park. The tournament was held for the first time in 1905. Like the other three Grand Slam events, it was contested by top-ranked amateur players and known as the Australian championships until the advent of open tennis in 1968. Originally based at the grass courts at Kooyong in the city of Melbourne's inner south-east, the tournament was in danger of fading into irrelevance before being revived in 1988 with a shift to Melbourne Park (then called Flinders Park), a new ( Rebound Ace) hardcourt venue next to the Melbourne Cricket Ground on the southern fringe of the central business district. Mats Wilander was the only player to win the tournament both on grass and on Rebound Ace.

Like all the Grand Slam tournaments, there are men's and women's singles competitions, men's, women's, and mixed doubles, as well as junior and master's competitions.

The Australian Open was held in December from 1977 through 1985, returning to its original January date in 1987. In 1986, because of the return to January, no tournament was held.

Margaret Court Arena at the Australian Open. Rod Laver Arena, the centre court, in the background.
Margaret Court Arena at the Australian Open. Rod Laver Arena, the centre court, in the background.

The two main courts are, Rod Laver Arena and Vodafone Arena, are unusual in that they feature movable roofs which can be shut in case of rain or extreme heat. It is the only Grand Slam tournament that can feature indoor play. However, Wimbledon has plans to build a retractable roof for Centre Court in 2009.

Held in the middle of the Australian summer, the Australian Open is famous for its notoriously hot days. An extreme-heat policy is often put into play when temperatures (and humidity) reach dangerous levels.


Names of the winners are inscribed on the perpetual trophy Cups.

  • The Women's Singles winner is presented with the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup.
  • The Men's Singles winner is presented with the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup.


The Australian Open is now managed by Tennis Australia, formerly the Lawn Tennis Association of Australia (LTAA), and was first played at the Warehouseman's Cricket Ground in St Kilda Road, Melbourne. 2006 was the 94th staging of the event (over a 101 year period due to interruption of the War years), with the tournament celebrating its Centenary in 2005.

The tournament was first played in 1905 as The Australasian Championships, became the Australian Championships in 1927 and the Australian Open in 1969. Since 1905, the Championships have been staged in five different cities as follows: Melbourne (50 times), Sydney (17 times), Adelaide (14 times), Brisbane (eight times), Perth (three times), as well as in New Zealand, (twice) in 1906 and 1912.

In 1972, it was decided to stage the Tournament in the one city each year, as opposed to visiting various states across the nation, and the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club was selected due to Melbourne attracting the biggest patronage.

Melbourne Park (formerly Flinders Park) was constructed in time for the 1988 Open to meet the demands of the evolving tournament that had outgrown Kooyong's capacity. The move to Melbourne Park was an immediate success, with a 90 percent increase in attendance in 1988 (266,436) on the previous year at Kooyong (140,000).

Recent attendances

  • 2007 - 554,858
  • 2006 - 550,550
  • 2005 - 543,873
  • 2004 - 521,691

Records and trivia

See: Australian Open records and trivia


Main article: List of Australian Open champions

  • Men's Singles
  • Women's Singles
  • Men's Doubles
  • Women's Doubles
  • Mixed Doubles

Retrieved from ""