Organisers of the Australian Open grand slam tennis tournament have pledged to deliver the “world’s best player facilities” at the 2019 edition of the event, having recently completed work on a new section of Melbourne Park.

A four-level ‘Player Pod’ facility will be open at next year’s competition on the east side of the Rod Laver Arena.

Here, competitors will benefit from up to 30 per cent more space in a dedicated player zone, with areas for training, treatment, recovery, dining and lounging.

Tournament director Craig Tiley said: “The players are the stars of the Australian Open and have voted the tournament as their favourite grand slam.
“We want to ensure they feel at home here, and that they have the best possible environment to prepare for their on-court performance. We also want to ensure they have great spaces to relax with their team, friends and family.

“Over the past few years we’ve spent a lot of time consulting with players, coaches and other stakeholders to drill down even further on what the players want, and what they need so they can perform at their very best.

“More space, places to relax and prepare quietly for their matches, state-of-the-art training and treatment facilities and of course, fantastic food, are all important to them.”

Other improvements at the Melbourne venue include the expanded Player Café, where capacity now stands at 420, up from 375.

The pampering service at the Player Beauty Bar will also now include a number of new services, while the on-site crèche has been expanded to help players that are travelling with families.

Tennis Australia chief operations officer Tom Larner added: “It’s thanks to the Victorian Government and the very significant ongoing redevelopment of Melbourne Park that the Australian Open continues to lead the world in Grand Slam facilities.

“I’m confident the players will love their new home away from home and the comfortable and high-quality amenities and services. We are excited about delivering the best-ever experience to the playing group in January.”

The 2019 Australian Open will take place from January 14-27.

Image: Joshua Sadli