What Is The Australian Open In Tennis?
- Website: https://ausopen.com
- Founded: 1905
- Location: Melbourne, Australia (since 1972)
- Venue: Melbourne Park (since 1988)
- Surface: Grass, outdoors (1905-1987) Hard, outdoors (since 1988)
- Prize Money: $75,000,000 (2022)
At the apex of professional tennis are the four Grand Slam tennis events, the first and most highly attended of which is the Australian Open. Listed below is a brief summation of the tournament’s rich history, a breakdown of what the winners of each match walk away with, and the various Australian Open records set and held by the very best of the sport.
The first Australian Open was held in 1905 at the Warehousemen’s Cricket Ground in Melbourne and was titled The Australasian Championships. After almost two decades, in 1922, women’s singles and doubles events were added to the roster of official events. For the next fifty or so years, the tournament slowly increased in popularity and was played in seven different locations, five in Australia (Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth) and even two singular events in New Zealand (Christchurch in 1906 and Hastings in 1912).
In the late 60s, 70s, and 80s, the tournament began to majorly shift things around. In 1969, the moniker The Australian Open was officially adopted. Three years later, it was decided to make the competition a spectator experience in Melbourne with an estimated attendance of 140,000 people. In 1988, the official playing surface was switched from grass to a hard outdoor court, and the official home of the Australian Open became the arena at Melbourne Park. Since these two switches occurred, the tournament bloomed into the most attended competition in tennis history, giving it the nickname “the happy slam.”
Prize Money & Ranking Points
Like any professional tennis tournament, the Australian Open is divided into qualifying rounds, competitive rounds, and final matches, with respective money and recognition awarded at each successive level.
Ranking points for the men are awarded by the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP), while the ranking points for the women are awarded by the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA). For singles, these points start at 0 for men and 2 for women in the first qualifying round and go up until 2000 points for winning the final match. There are no qualifying rounds for doubles, and the points start at 0 for the men and 10 for the women in the R64 round and increase gradually until 2000 points for winning the final match.
Prize money for the Australian Open works very similarly to the way that ranking points are awarded by the ATP and WTA. Winnings are distributed equally between women’s and men’s tournaments, with a starting amount of $25,250 for the Q1 round and ending eventually at $2,875,000 for winning the final match. For doubles, prize money begins later in the second round (2R) with $30,050 and increases per round until the final award amount of $675,000. For mixed doubles, prize money begins in round three (3R) with A $6,250 and ends with a grand prize of $190,000.
Records at the Australian Open
As one of the Grand Slam tournaments, the best players in the history of tennis have graced the Australian Open’s courts, and each division holds an impressive record waiting to be broken. Novak Djokovic holds the record for most men’s singles titles with nine wins, the most recent in 2021, and the record for most men’s doubles titles is Adrian Quist with ten total wins. As for the women’s singles title record, Margaret Court still reigns supreme with 11 wins, while Thelma Coyne Long holds the women’s double title record with 12 wins.
Who Won The 2022 Australian Open?
In the 2022 Australian Open, Rafael Nadal won the men’s singles final against Daniil Medvedev in five contentious sets. In the women’s singles final, Ashleigh Barty successfully defended her 2021 win against Danielle Collins in two sets. Thanasi Kokkinakis and Nick Kyrgios successfully defended their 2021 title against fellow Australians Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in two long sets in the men’s doubles. In the women’s doubles, Barbora Krejčíková and Kateřina Siniaková successfully defended their own titles against Anna Danilina and Beatriz Haddad Maia in three sets. Lastly, in the mixed doubles final, Kristina Mladenovic and Ivan Dodig defended their title and won against Jaimee Fourlis and Jason Kubler in two quick sets.
How Much Does the Winner of the Australian Open Get?
The winner of the men’s and women’s singles tournaments are awarded $2,875,000 for winning the final match. The winners of the men’s and women’s doubles tournaments are awarded a prize amount of $675,000. The winners of the mixed doubles final are given a grand total of $190,000.