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Monday, March 20, 2023

Australian Open Has Swung Into The Metaverse

Tennis Australia has recently collaborated with Decentraland to host the Australian Open, which will be the first grand slam to officially be part of the Metaverse. A virtual design of several key areas in Melbourne Park, which includes the Rod Laver Arena and the Grand Slam Park, will be open for the entire period that the original tournament takes place, which will go for 15 days, starting on the 17th of January.

The event will also be including exclusive content for its virtual visitors, including behind-the-scenes footage from over 300 different cameras placed strategically around the Arena, including the exclusive player arrivals area and the practice village. 

Australian Open Will Include Metaverse Due To Covid Restrictions

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Along with broadcasting the live footage and the Australian Open radio, it will also be featuring archival footage from quite a few tennis matches which would date back to the 70s, and virtual meet-ups with the tennis players including Mark Philippoussis, with several other players not confirmed yet. The NFT and Metaverse Project Manager Ridley Plummer of Tennis Australia did state in his virtual welcome address on Decentraland that he hopes for the AO to become the most accessible and inclusive sports event in the world. 

He also added that taking the Australian Open into the Metaverse is quite an important step in providing truly global access to the great event. This is especially pertinent given the travel restrictions due to the pandemic, which makes it very difficult for most fans to reach Melbourne to view the event in real life. The 2021 tournament has also faced a lot of other challenges, which include a historically low number of on-site spectators. 

Despite the timely introduction of this partnership, Plummer has stated that the Australian Open plans to continue to collaborate with Decentraland in the future.

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