Histroy

The Australian Open is managed by Tennis Australia, formerly the Lawn Tennis Association of Australia (LTAA), and was first played at the Warehouseman's Cricket Ground in Melbourne in 1905. This facility is now known as the Albert Reserve Tennis Centre.[2] The tournament was first known as the Australasian Championships and then became the Australian Championships in 1927 and the Australian Open in 1969.[3] Since 1905, the Australian Open has been staged in five Australian and two New Zealand cities as follows: Melbourne (55 times), Sydney (17 times), Adelaide (14 times), Brisbane (7 times), Perth (3 times), Christchurch (in 1906), and Hastings (in 1912).[3] In 1972, when it was decided to stage the tournament in the same city each year, the Kooyong Lawn Tennis Club was selected because Melbourne attracted the biggest patronage.[2] Though started in 1905, the tournament was not designated as being a major championship until 1924, by the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF) in a 1923 meeting.

The tournament committee changed the structure of the tournament to include seeding at that time.[4] Melbourne Park (formerly Flinders Park) was constructed for the 1988 tournament to meet the demands of a 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).[5] Because of its geographic remoteness very few foreign players entered this tournament at the beginning. In the 1920s, the trip by ship from Europe to Australia took about 45 days. The first tennis players who came by aircraft were the US Davis Cup players in November 1946.[5] Even inside the country, many players could not travel easily. When the tournament was held in Perth, no one from Victoria or New South Wales crossed by train, a distance of about 3,000 kilometres (1,900 mi) between the east and west coasts. In Christchurch in 1906, of a small field of 10 players, only two Australians attended, and the tournament was won by a New Zealander.[6]


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