In tennis sport, all 4 grand slams are played in a specific order in a year. First we Australian Open, then French, Wimbledon and in the last we have US Open.

Can anyone explain the exact reason why this order is fixed and how it was decided when first time these championships came into play.

  • 3
    I imagine it has to do with Australia being in the southern hemisphere (And therefore January being a summer month)?
    – Joe
    Sep 17, 2015 at 16:20
  • Also you have to have Wimbledon in June/July, since it rains almost all year in England ;)
    – Fatalize
    Sep 18, 2015 at 12:26
  • Hehe @Fatalize , but yeah seriously it came in mind while writing something about these grand slams that what is the reason behind such an order. On which basis, tennis sport authority decide the time period for these tournaments to organize..
    – Ian Clarke
    Sep 18, 2015 at 15:54

2 Answers 2


The Australian Open didn't really become one of the 4 majors that all the top players competed in until the early 1980's. In fact, the tournament wasn't even held in 1986 because of a reshuffling of the schedule that year. As with most tournaments on the ATP and WTA tours, they are held during a time of year that has the best weather. For the Australian Open, that means during the summer time in the southern hemisphere, so, late January/early February. If you go back far enough in the history of the Australian Open you'll see the dates for it being in December, so it's moved around on the calendar a little bit over the years before it finally settled into the same two weeks over the past 25 years or so.

As for the other majors - it's really the same reason. Paris has good weather in late May/early June. Wimbledon has - typically - the best weather for tennis in late June/early July. The US Open could really be played anytime from June through September but Wimbledon and the French Open already had the calendar during the earlier summer months so it's been played in late August.

Also keep in mind that the French-Wimbledon-US Open are three different surfaces so the tour tries to allow for some time in between each event for players to play in warm up tournaments on the respective surfaces to allow players to adjust.

  • However, each year, players complain of the excessive Australian heat & many retirement happens due to heat strokes. Dec 26, 2016 at 7:21

The Australian open is always first for many reasons:

  1. In Australia, January is in summer and suits the surface,
  2. The whole of January are school holidays allowing people to travel with their kids to the Open.
  3. Most tradespeople in Australia don't work in January, thus suiting them.
  4. Both the NRL (Rugby league) and the AFL are in their off-season.
  5. January attracts extremely large crowds with around 720,899 people as the total attendance figure (compared to around 650,000 for the US Open, 600,000 for Wimbledon and around 450,000 for Roland-Garros)
  • 1
    Hi Luje, I feel that some of these points are correct, but not all of them. I can assure you that the vast majority of people are working in Australia again by the end of the first week of January. This answer would be stronger if you could add some sources to support each claim. Dec 22, 2016 at 0:54

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