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Australian Open 2022: All you need to know about the first Grand Slam of the year
Jan 10, 2022, 7:57:00 AM

Australian Open 2022: All you need to know about the first Grand Slam of the year

On 17th January, the Australian Open is all set to begin. The famous Blue Court will be witnessing some of the biggest Tennis players in the world and some of the most entertaining Tennis fixtures.

Formally started by the Lawn Tennis Association of Australia in 1905, the Australian Open has become one of the biggest tennis tournaments in the world. In the beginning, it came to be known as the Australasian Championship and in 1969, it was renamed as Australian Open.

The 53rd Australian Open, which was scheduled to take place from 18th January to 31st January 2021, was postponed due to the Covid outbreak. However, this year, the tournament is back and will be taking place according to the schedule and on exact dates.

Let’s see some of the major details about this year’s Australian Open and will predict a winner for the same.

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Australian Open Schedule

The first fixture of the 2022 Australian Open will begin on the 17th of January 2022. Its Women’s Final will air on the 29th of January and the Men’s Final to air on the 30th of January. The Wheelchair tournament will start on 23rd January and its final will take place on 27th January.

Before the main fixtures kick-off, most players will be involved in playing traditional smaller matches in Australia. Below are the important dates in the major cities for different smaller tournaments.

NSW: ATP Cup (Jan 1 - 9), Sydney Tennis Classic (Jan 10 - 15).

VIC: Melbourne Summer Set 1 (Jan 4 – 9), Melbourne Summer Set 2 (Jan 4 – Jan 9), Bendigo and Traralgon Internationals (Jan 4 – 9), Victorian Wheelchair Open (Jan 8 – 12), Melbourne Wheelchair Open, Jan 15 - 19).

SA: Adelaide International 1 (Jan 3 – Jan 9) + Adelaide International 2 (Jan 10 - 15).

Covid Regulations and Vaccination Rules

It is a clear instruction from Australian Open authorities that all the players, staff, ground members, officials, and anyone who wants to witness the matches live, will have to be fully vaccinated. If not, he or she should have a medical exemption. These rules are only applicable to individuals who are above 12 years of age.

International players, who are scheduled to take part in the tournament, should present their proof of a negative test 72 hours before their trip to Australia. Once they reach the destination, they will have to isolate until returning a further negative test on arrival.

Who all have pulled out of the Australian Open 2022?

In big news, Tennis superstar Novak Djokovic has pulled out of the ATP tour. There are still debates going on for his presence but the latest update is that Djokovic will mark his absence.

On January 5 - Novak was granted permission to travel to Australia. He even posted the same on Instagram and confirmed the news to his Australian fans. This was the same day when Australian states like New South Wales, Victoria, and multiple other regions reported a sudden spike in their number of Covid cases.

But on January 6, there was mass public outrage over his announcement. Due to the same reason, the tennis player announced that his visa was denied by Border Force while at Tullamarine Airport in Melbourne.

In the latest updates, Novak is still confirmed to miss the tournament.

Who Can Win the Australian Open 2022?

Since Novak Djokovic has pulled out of the tournament, this gives an opportunity to Daniil Medvedev to win the Men’s single’s trophy tournament. He was runner-up in the last season of the Australian Open. He will face a tough challenge from Rafael Nadal.

The World No. 1 in the women’s division, Ash Barty, will be the number one contender to win the trophy of the Australian Open this year. Naomi Osaka is also making a comeback in the Australian Open and she will be the biggest challenge for Barty.

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Words: Shimit Mathur

Image: PA