18-31 Jan 2016
Outdoor hard (Plexicushion Prestige)
Rod Laver Arena - 14,820 capacity
Hisense Arena - 11,000 capacity
Novak Djokovic (SRB)
Simone Bolelli / Faboi Fognini (ITA)
Serena Williams (USA)
Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA) / Lucie Safarova (CZE)
Martina Hings (SUI) / Leander Paes (IND)
Roman Safiullin (RUS)
Jake Delaney / Marc Polmans (AUS)
Tereza Mihalikova (SVK)
Miriam Kolodziejova / Marketa Vondrousova (CZE)
The first tournament, a men's only event named the Australasian Championships, was staged in 1905 and Rodney Heath won the singles title. At this stage it wasn't designated as one of the majors and only reached this staus in 1924. The competition became known as the Australian Championships in 1927 and then finally the Australian Open in 1969.
The original venue was the Warehouseman’s Cricket Ground in Melbourne. The tournament went on to be held in numerous cities around Australia and New Zealand before it permanently settled in Melbourne in 1972, first at Kooyong LTC and then at the purpose built Flinders Park, now known as Melbourne Park, where it remains today.
Melbourne Park began staging the Australian Open in 1988. It was constructed to meet the demands of a tournament that had outgrown Kooyong's limited capacity, and the move was an immediate success with a 90 per cent increase in attendance the first year. The two main courts are Rod Laver Arena and Hisense Arena, both have a retractable roof.
The tournament was held on grass until 1987, but the move to Melburne Park signalled an end to this tradition and the Australian Open has been played on hard courts ever since. Rebound Ace was used for the first 20 years, then in 2008 it was replaced with Plexicushion Prestige, which provides better consistency and less heat retention.
All-time greats - men
Roy Emerson has been crowned singles champion the most, although all six of his victories came in the 1960s before the Open Era, which began at the Australian Open in 1969 when Rod Laver won the last of his three titles. Following his 2015 victory, Novak Djokovic took sole ownership of second place in the all-time greats by claiming his fifth title. Andre Agassi and Roger Federer have clinched four wins apiece.
All-time greats - women
Margaret Court is by far and away the most prolific singles champion with 11 victories, split seven and four between the Amateur and Open Eras. Serena Williams is the most successful Open Era player, triumphing six times, while Evonne Goolagong, Steffi Graf and Monica Seles have all recorded four wins.