The Big 4 – All About the Grand Slam Tennis Tournaments

Also known as the Majors, the Grand Slam tournaments are the 4 most important annual tennis events in the world. With the most points towards rankings, prize money, and attention from both the public and the media, the Grand Slam tournaments also offer the greatest strength and size of field of any other tennis tournaments.

Beginning with the Australian Open in mid-January, the Grand Slams continue with the French Open in late May through to early June, Wimbledon in July, and finally the US Open in August-September. Here’s everything you need to know about the Grand Slam tennis tournaments.

1. The Australian Open

Held annually over the last two weeks of January in Melbourne, Australia, the Australian Open is the first of the four annual Grand Slam events. Featuring men’s and women’s singles; men’s, women’s, and mixed doubles; as well as junior’s championships; and wheelchair, legends and a variety of exhibition events, the Australian Open is the country’s premier tennis event.

While the tournament was contested on grass prior to 1988, two types of hardcourt surfaces have since been introduced at Melbourne Park and players now compete on blue Plexicushion.

2. The French Open

Also known as the Roland-Garros, the French Open is the second of the four Grand Slam tournaments held annually and takes place over two weeks between late May and early June at the Stade Roland-Garros in Paris, France.

Much like online blackjack Canada is the best in the world; the French Open is the premier clay court tennis championship event in the world and is currently the only Grand Slam event contested on clay.

Owing to the seven rounds required, the slow-playing surface, and the best-of-five-set men’s singles matches, the French Open is widely regarded as the most physically demanding tennis tournament of all.

3. Wimbledon

While officially known as The Championships, Wimbledon, the third of the four Grand Slam tournaments is known simply as Wimbledon. Widely regarded as the most prestigious tennis tournament in the world, it is also the oldest and has been contested since 1877 at the All England Club in Wimbledon, London on outdoor grass courts.

Wimbledon is the only tournament of the four Grand Slams which is still played on grass and includes several traditions such as a strict dress code for competitors and Royal patronage, as well as the consumption of strawberries and cream throughout the tournament.

4. The US Open

The Unites States Open Tennis Championships, known simply as the US Open, is the fourth and final of the Grand Slam tournaments which take place on an annual basis.

Contested since 1978 at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens, New York, the US Open traditionally starts on the last Monday of August, continuing for two weeks, and consists of five primary championships: men’s and women’s singles, men’s and women’s doubles, and mixed doubles.

The US Open is also the only Grand Slam tournament that employs tiebreakers in every set of a singles match and 16 qualifiers, instead of 12, in the women’s singles draw.