Novak Djokovic is welcome at Australian Open, says tournament director; Russian and Belarusian players can compete with their eyes closed
If there’s one thing Melbourne is known for, it’s Australian Open grand slams. The grassy oasis north of Melbourne is, perhaps, most famous for holding the biggest-ever tennis tournament in live-streamed, broadcast television at the highest possible frame rate and resolution. But that doesn’t stop the fans from getting up in the early hours of the morning to turn up to watch it.
It’s not as if Melbourne is one of the world’s great cities, but it is home to a tennis tournament which has been the talk of the town for most of the last century. The Australian Open was the first of the modern grand slams and began in 1889, predating the Open at Wimbledon by a decade. The men’s final has been held on the first Sunday of January since 1927, although both the first and second men’s finals were originally the same event.
The third-highest ranking player in the world has been Australian Open winner Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open since he turned pro during the first week of the tournament. Djokovic has won the tournament on three separate occasions, the first of which he also won with world number one Novak Djokovic at the 2011 Australian Open. His career-high ranking is world number two, but he has the second highest win total behind Roger Federer’s 20 titles, with a whopping 39 victories at the Australian Open.
While Djokovic is certainly one of the most celebrated figures of the current generation, Australia’s most famous tennis player isn’t even around anymore. That honour goes to Roger Federer, who won the men’s title at the Australian Open in 2002.
The tournament is also notable for being the world’s foremost test for women’s tennis players at the highest level. The top-ranked women’s player isn’t even named and she’s in her early 40s, but she’s still the highest ranked woman in the world and she