Changes to Australian Open Extreme Heat Policy -
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 2002, 05:21 AM Thread Starter
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Changes to Australian Open Extreme Heat Policy

sorry I dont have a link as I got it from the Tennis Aus e-newsletter. Not sure if its been posted, apologies if it has...

"Changes to Extreme Heat Policy"

With the mercury in the city topping 30 degrees Centigrade (C) over the past two days, and water restrictions already in place, residents and visitors had an early reminder that Melbourne's high summer temperatures are on their way.

At the Australian Open, changes are also underway to ensure the summer heat continues to be a positive feature of the tournament.

In a move designed to benefit fans, on-court staff and players alike, the tournament's Extreme Heat Policy has been changed to include a combination of lower air temperature and the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature (WBGT) which is acknowledged medically as the best measure of heat stress.

In 2003, the commencement of further matches to be played outdoors will be suspended if the air temperature reaches 35 degrees C but only if in conjunction with a WBGT of 28 or above. Both criteria must occur simultaneously. These matches will be played as soon as practicable after conditions cool below the threshold if time permits. On Rod Laver Arena and Vodafone Arena, where there are retractable roofs, the roofs would be closed for any subsequent match in those conditions.

However, as in 2002, any match which is already in progress will be continued until its completion.

The Wet Bulb Globe Temperature is a combination of ambient air temperature, humidity, intensity of solar radiation and wind speed which together affect the ability of an individual to lose heat whether exercising or sitting still.

Its inclusion as part of the Extreme Heat Policy is a move away from relying solely on the air temperature which has seen a steady reduction from a 38 degree limit in 2002 and the 40 degree limit when the policy was introduced in 1998.

Australian Open Chief Executive, Paul McNamee, said, "We have a responsibility to ensure we are looking after the best interests of everyone coming to the tournament, whether as players, spectators or our on-court officials, particularly ballpersons.

"Melbourne's summer weather is one of the tournament's great attractions, and by taking these proactive steps to further refine our policy we can ensure that even on the days when temperatures really soar, the appropriate safeguards are in place."

Thanks to Tennis Australia for the article.

lol, they've gone all scientific on us. They copped a lot of flack from sections of the public after the womens final this year was played under such oppressive conditions, so I guess it comes as no surprise to see them 'tweak' the rules...even if it will confuse some people
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 2002, 05:40 AM
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very good post. btw, which condition is harder for the players to play under, the US Open with it's heat or the AO with its heat. I know both are very difficult?
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 2002, 05:51 AM Thread Starter
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Melbourne summer heat is very 'up and down'. You have your sunny scorchers, where it is just dry and HOT, and other times it can be the same temperature but very humid and 'muggy' where it is difficult to breathe! Other times the heat can be more pleasant especially when you get the light southerly breezes.

I dont know what US Open heat is like, but I imagine it is very tough anywhere to play in very hot conditions. The Rebound Ace courts here get very hot and sticky and some players have described it as being slowly cooked in an oven!
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 2002, 11:48 AM
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Can anyone remember the conditions for the final last year? Now that was hot!
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old Nov 14th, 2002, 05:38 PM
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The stickiness of the Rebound Ace courts is what most likely caused Medina Garrigues' injury at last year's AO.
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