The Australian Open, billed as the 'Grand Slam of the Asia-Pacific', has been played traditionally during the Australian summer season. First held in 1905, the Australian Open has grown in terms of popularity and is now the largest sporting spectacle in the Southern Hemisphere generating significant revenue through tourism for the country.
The Grand Slam was the first among the Grand Slams to have a retractable roof at the famous Rod Laver Arena and later the Margaret Court Arena. Initially known as the Australasian Championships, the Australian Open is the only Grand Slam to have been played across 7 cities in 2 different countries. Sydney, Perth, Adelaide, Brisbane, Christchurch, Hastings and Melbourne have all played host to this Grand Slam event.
In the earlier days, the tournament was played on grass much like Wimbledon. Later carpet surface was also used. Today it is one of two Grand Slams along with the US Open played on hard courts. The winner of the Men's Singles competition is presented with a replica of the 'Norman Brookes Challenge Cup'. We take a look at the 5 youngest winners in the competition's history:
#5 John Bromwich
John Bromwich of Australia had a very unorthodox approach. He was primarily a left-handed player but served using his right-hand and was one of the first players to use a two-handed backhand. Bromwich was part of the historic 1939 Australian Davis Cup Team which remains the only team in the competition's storied history to come back from 0-2 down in a final and win.
An accomplished player across all 3 categories, Bromwich won Grand Slams in Singles, Doubles and Mixed Doubles. His first of 2 Australian Open triumphs came in 1939 when he was 21 years, 75 days old. He would consider himself unlucky as the tournament was not held for 5 years from 1941 to 1945. His second title came in 1946 when the tournament became an annual fixture again.