Australian Open 2023 to serve up first-ever All Abilities Day
An All Abilities Day, which focuses on recognising the many inclusive formats of tennis, is being introduced at Australian Open 2023.
Australian Open 2023 will host the first-ever All Abilities Day on Tuesday 24 January to celebrate and provide opportunities for all members of our diverse community to experience and enjoy the tournament.
Former world No.1 quad wheelchair player and 2022 Australian of The Year Dylan Alcott joined Tennis Australia’s Head of Players with Disability Danielle Gescheit, as well as world No.3 quad wheelchair player Heath Davidson, Victorian blind and low vision tennis players Adam Fayad and Robert Fletcher, ATC 2022 II-2 women’s singles champion Olivia Sayers, and deaf and hard of hearing junior player Ryder Smith to make the announcement at Melbourne Park this morning.
All Abilities Day will focus on recognising the many inclusive formats of tennis, and invite people who have vision, hearing, mobility, sensory and or intellectual disabilities to enjoy all that the Australian Open has to offer in a safe and inclusive environment.
“It’s bloody awesome, the first Grand Slam to do this … disability is often the category that is left out, so to have an All Abilities Day is pretty special,” said 23-time Grand Slam champion Dylan Alcott.
“Twenty percent of the Australian population have some form of disability, physical or non-physical, and they love tennis, and they deserve the opportunity to come, watch and play.
“All the work that has been done … I know my consultancy firm Get Skilled Access has been involved around things like seating, ticketing, social media … that’s pretty cool and leading the way for other sports and major events to hopefully follow. Everybody deserves the right to pick and choose what they do in their lives, and I hope lots of people with disabilities come and enjoy the AO.”
Coinciding with the start of the Australian Open wheelchair tennis competition, which features an expanded draw for the world’s best players, All Abilities Day will include on-court opportunities for kids and adults from Tennis Australia’s disability pathways. These include intellectual disability (PwID), Down syndrome, neurodiverse, deaf or hard of hearing (DHoH), blind or low vision, and people with physical disability and are designed to offer an on-court experience to anyone who would like to come and try the sport.
All Abilities Day will also raise awareness of the many Australian Open initiatives that make the tournament one of the most accessible and inclusive events in the world.
|Australian Open 2023|
|Wednesday 18 January||AO First Nations Day|
|Tuesday 24 January||AO All Abilities Day|
|Friday 27 January||AO Pride Day|
Australian Open 2023 will also host the first-ever international persons with intellectual disability and deaf and hard of hearing tournaments – to be played from 27-29 January at Melbourne Park.
“Tennis is an incredibly inclusive sport and making it accessible to people of all abilities is a vital part of the work we do year-round,” Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley said.
“I’m delighted that through All Abilities Day at the AO we can showcase the many formats available for people of all abilities, and promote the opportunities that make the sport, and our event, welcoming and easy to access through community partnerships, activations, opportunities, and technologies.”
The day is part of the event’s commitment to equity, inclusion and diversity, promoted through themed days, and range of activations, to ensure everyone is welcome and the Australian Open is truly #Open4All.
Accessibility initiatives at Australian Open 2023 include:
“Action Audio, Bindi Maps and Travellers Aid are great examples of our commitment to expanding on innovation, to provide access to the game, making the AO experience as welcoming, safe and inclusive as possible for everyone,” Tennis Australia Head of Innovation Machar Reid said.
|Australian Open 2023
All Abilities tournament dates
|Monday 23 January||AO wheelchair draw ceremony|
|Tuesday 24 January – Saturday 28 January||AO wheelchair tennis competition|
|Friday 27 – Sunday 29 January||AO PwID and DHoH international tournament|
Book online, play today: Visit play.tennis.com.au to get out on court and have some fun!