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Australian Open

[ aw-streyl-yuhn oh-puhn ]

What is the Australian Open?

The Australian Open is one of the four major tennis tournaments that are considered grand slam competitions, along with the French Open, the Wimbledon Championships, and the US Open.

The Australian Open is the first major tennis tournament of the year. It is called an open because it is open to both amateurs and professionals. It is nicknamed The Happy Slam. 

There is also a golf tournament called the Australian Open.

When is the Australian Open?

The Australian Open tennis tournament typically starts during the second or third week in January and runs for two weeks. In Australia (which is in the Southern Hemisphere), January is a summer month.

The 2021 Australian Open (which was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic) will start on February 8 and run until February 21.

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Related words

X Games, Daytona 500, pickleball, G.O.A.T., 🏈 American Football emoji

Where does Australian Open come from?

The event that would come to be called the Australian Open was first held in 1905. The first tournament open to women was held in 1922. It was originally called the Australasian Championships and was renamed in 1969 after it was opened to amateur players.

Love? Deuce? Double bagel? Grab your racquet and learn how to talk tennis here.

Examples of Australian Open

Serena Williams is 20 weeks pregnant, which means she won the Australian Open while being pregnant and didn't drop a single set. The GOAT.
@LiamPaulCanning, April 19, 2017
Defending Australian Open champion, No. 2 Novak Djokovic, is upset by world No.117 Denis Istomin in 5 sets in the 2nd round. #AusOpen.
@SportsCenter, January 19, 2017
Sofia Kenin became the youngest Australian Open champion in 12 years on Saturday night, beating Garbiñe Muguruza 4-6, 6-2, 6-2 to claim her first Grand Slam title.
Ben Rothenberg, New York Times, February 1, 2020
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More information and context on the Australian Open

Did you know … ?

  • The first match of what was then called the Australasian Championships was played on a cricket field.
  • The referees of the Australian Open can pause a match at any time if the heat rises to an unsafe temperature.
  • The longest Australian Open match ever lasted more than five hours.

What are other words used in discussion of the Australian Open?

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Note

This is not meant to be a formal definition of Australian Open like most terms we define on Dictionary.com, but is rather an informal word summary that hopefully touches upon the key aspects of the meaning and usage of Australian Open that will help our users expand their word mastery.