Australian Open set for historic 8 February start
The start date of Australian Open 2021 – featuring singles, doubles and wheelchair competitions – is confirmed as 8 February.
Australian Open 2021 will take place at Melbourne Park from 8 to 21 February. Tickets will go on sale on Wednesday 23 December.
“This will be an historic Australian Open on so many levels,” Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley said.
“For the first time in more than 100 years the Australian Open will start in February and we look forward to offering the players what we believe will be one of their best playing experiences in 2021.
“From the outset, ensuring players have the best possible preparation for the Australian Open, while at all times protecting the precious COVID-free environment that the Victorian community has built through incredible sacrifice and hard work over the past six months, has been paramount.
“It has taken eight months of working alongside government authorities, here in Victoria, nationally and interstate, to give us the opportunity to present an Australian Open that will play a major role in both the economic and psychological reinvigoration and rejuvenation of Melbourne and Victoria.
“AO 2021 is going to be all about supporting local businesses – our tennis coaches, the farmers, food and wine producers, chefs, artists and musicians – and celebrating everything that is great about our country, as well as providing opportunities to those who’ve been so hard hit during the pandemic, particularly in Melbourne and Victoria.”
Australian Open 2021 will feature singles, doubles and wheelchair competitions. AO qualifying will be held offshore, with the women’s event taking place in Dubai, and men’s qualifying in Doha from 10-13 January. The AO Junior Championships has been postponed until later in the year.
Players will compete for more than $80 million in prize money during their time in Australia, with the AO total prize pool remaining at the 2020 level of $71.5 million. Players exiting in the first round of the AO will take home $100,000, up 15 per cent from 2020. There have also been significant increases to prize money for qualifying and the early rounds, with the full breakdown to be provided in the coming weeks.
The world’s top players have been eagerly awaiting final confirmation of the AO dates and details and can now prepare to arrive in Australia from 15 January and undertake mandatory quarantine for 14 days. All players and their teams arriving for the AO are above and beyond the numbers of returning Australians.
“Melbourne is the home of the biggest sporting events and it’s fantastic that arrangements have been settled for Melbourne Park in February,” Acting Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Jaclyn Symes said.
“The 2021 Open will look a bit different and that’s necessary to ensure the safety of everyone, from players, ballkids and the wider community.”
Australian Open 2021 tickets go on sale to the general public at 12:00 noon AEDT Wednesday 23 December via ticketmaster.com.au.