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The history of Australian Open dates back to 1905

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Australian Open. Photo/Sky Sports

For avid tennis lovers, the Australian Open is nearly a cultural thing passed on to a line of generations. The history of this Grand Slam opening tournament of every new season is nothing short of a perfectly pieced puzzle.

The tournament brings with it be priceless lessons over the years. Here is what you should know about the Australian Open.

When Did the Australian Open First Start?

Founded in Melbourne’s Warehouseman’s Cricket Ground in November 1905, the Australian Open is managed by Tennis Australia, formerly known as the Lawn Tennis Association of Australia (LTAA).

It is the oldest tennis tournament in the world. The facility, which is now known as the Albert Reserve Tennis Centre, used to be a grass court when it first opened.

The tournament was originally named the Australasian Championships when it first began. In 1927, the competition was renamed the Australian Championships. The Australian Open was first held in 1969, after which it was renamed.

Several Australian cities have hosted the Australian Open since its inception in 1905, including Melbourne (55 times), Sydney (17 times), Adelaide (14 times), Brisbane (7 times), Perth (3 times).

Australian Open.

Australian Open. Photo/DNA India

It was also held in Christchurch (1906), as well as two New Zealand towns: Hastings and Christchurch

Despite the fact that it was first held in 1905, the tournament was not officially recognized as a major championship until 1924. This followed following a conference of the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF).

It was at that point that the tournament committee revised the structure of the competition to incorporate seeding. A tournament was not held between 1916 and 1918 as a result of the First World War.

During World War II, the event was not held between 1941 and 1945 – a period of seven years.

In 1972, it was agreed to hold the event in Melbourne every year because it drew the most number of spectators of any Australian city at the time of the decision.

From 1972 until its relocation to the new Melbourne Park facility in 1988, the tournament was held at the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club.

Who Started the Australian Open?

The Lawn Tennis Association of Australasia which later rebranded to the Australian Championship bore the tournament.

The inaugural men’s competition took place in 1905, while the first women’s event was conducted in 1922.

Flinders Park later renamed Melbourne Park in 1996, served as the tournament’s temporary home until 1988. Then, the hard courts of Flinders Park became the tournament’s permanent home. Wimbledon is now the only major tennis event held on the grass with the changeover to hard courts in 1988.

Moreover, the Australian Open languished for many years due to a lack of foreign players willing to travel long distances in order to compete. It affected the international outlook of the match.

This problem was eventually solved with the invention of commercial jet travel. Since then, the tournament takes place every January.

Why Was Australian Open Played Twice in 1977?

The Australian Open has always been held in January. However, 1977 was the only year in which the tournament was contested twice in a calendar year.

This happened due to a change in the Australian Open draw, which resulted in the tournament being moved to December.

There were two tournaments in 1977 as a result of this decision, and the December schedule was maintained until 1987 when normal routine resumed.

When Did the Australian Open Change From Grass?

An important step forward in a new direction occurred in 1988 when it was decided to discontinue the use of grass courts.

Because of this, the results of the Australian Open have only been determined when the tournament is played on grass courts since its beginning. These were eventually replaced with blue hard courts, which are now synonymous with the Australian Open.

Australian Open

Australian Open. Photo/Wikipedia

Who Are Australian Open All-time Champions?

Following his six consecutive titles in the Australian Tennis Open, Novak Djokovic is the tournament’s undisputed hero. His record is shared with Roy Stanley Emerson, who also has a record in this category.

It was a long time ago that Emerson had the record of six Australian Open championships, but that was before Djokovic. In contrast, every one of his triumphs came in a row, starting with the first in 1963.

Emerson has earned the title of “legend of the Australian Open” as a result of his unrivalled dominance over the course of six years.

In honour of eleven-time Grand Slam champion Rod Laver, the centre court and main stadium at Melbourne Park is named after him. Laver is widely recognized as one of the best tennis players in the history of the game.

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