Tennis: Australian Open 2024 Preview

The Australian Open is set to begin on the 14th of January, marking the first Grand Slam of this calendar year. A number of interesting storylines dominate this year’s competition, including the return of Rafael Nadal and Naomi Osaka. 

Nadal returns to professional tennis after taking nearly 12 months to heal a hip injury. His last competitive match ahead of the 2024 season was at last year’s Australian Open, where he was knocked out in the second round.

On the Women’s side, Naomi Osaka will make her return to the sport after becoming a mother. 

The 26-year-old from Japan has won the tournament two times already and will be looking to reclaim her world No. 1 ranking.

Once again the tournament will take place at Melbourne Park, one of the largest tennis venues in the world. Melbourne Park has three main show courts: the Rod Laver Arena (the second largest indoor sports venue in Australia), the John Cain Arena and Margaret Court Arena. At last year’s event more than 902,000 people attended.

Prize money for the tournament will be at an all-time high with a total of A$86,500,000 on the line. This is an increase of over 13% from last year’s pool. Single’s winner will make a staggering A$3,150,000. 

Prize Money For Australian Open 2024

First Round$120,000$36,000
Second Round$180,000$53,000
Third Round$255,000$75,000
Fourth Round$375,000N/A
Quarter Finals$600,000$128,000
Semi Finals$990,000$227,500

2024 Australian Open Schedule

The qualifying tournament for the Australian Open will take place from Monday 8 January to Friday 12 January.

The main draw will then start for the first; time ever on Sunday 14 January and spread over 15 days until Sunday 28 January. The Women’s Final will take place on Saturday, Jan 17th and the Men’s Final on the 28th.

Play will commence at 0:00 GMT each day, with the night sessions starting at 8:00 GMT.

Australian Open Favourites

Once again, all eyes will be on Novak Djokovic, as the Serbian looks to win his record 11th Australian Open title this year. Djokovic currently holds the most number of Grand Slam wins with 24, two ahead of rival Rafael Nadal. In the 2023 Australian Open, Djokovic defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final, 6-3, 7-6, 7-6.

While Djokovic is a clear favourite, a number of other challengers could pose a threat to the World No. 1. Young phenom Carlos Alcaraz has been in great form as of late and should enter the draw as the number 2 seed. He will be looking to repeat his performance at last year’s Wimbledon where he topped Djokovic in the Finals. 

Another top competitor in the Men’s draw is Russian Daniil Medvedev. He was able to defeat  Alcaraz late last year in the US Open Semis but fell short to Djokovic in the Finals.

Nadal will be coming off an injury but cannot be counted out. It’s unclear as to what kind of form he will be in but the Spaniard has always played his best at Grand Slams.

On the Women’s side of the draw, Polish star Iga Swiatek and Aryna Sabalenka from Belarus enter the tournament as favourites. Sabelenka is defending champion after defeating Elena Rybakina in the final, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 to claim her first ever Grand Slam title.

As mentioned before, Naomi Osaka will be making a comeback after having her first child. Eager to get back on the court, the Japanese former World No. 1 is expected to be one of the players to look out for.

American Coco Gauff is fresh off a US Open win late last year. The 19-year-old is currently ranked the world number 3 in singles. Gauff could without a doubt take the Australian Open if she can hit her stride.

Top Seeds


1. Iga Swiatek (POL)

2. Aryna Sabalenka

3. Coco Guaff (USA)

4. Elena Rybakina (KAZ)

5. Jessica Pegula (USA)


1. Novak Djokovic (SRB)

2. Carlos Alcaraz (ESP)

3. Daniil Medvedev

4. Jannik Sinner (ITA)

5. Andrey Rublev