History of US Open Tennis Championship: Simple and Brief

The US Open or more commonly known as the flushing meadows tennis tournaments is one of the Grand Slam tournaments. It is played in New York City on the last of every year and the first time its history started in 1881.

US open history states that In the first-year only US National Lawn Tennis Association(USTA) club members were allowed in the first year to compete.

It’s held for two weeks at end of August & early September. In the coming year 2020, it’s going to be held on Monday, 29 August – Sunday, 11 September 2020.

It’s a hard court surface tournament but not from the start as it has switched from two surfaces, Grass (1881 to 1974) and Clay (1975-1977) to the current hard court surface since 1978.

In the last 2019 edition, the prize money was 57 Million US Dollars, who’s champion is Rafael Nadal. This tournament is used to start on the last Monday of August leads to September for 02 weeks.

Events of US Open

It’s organized in five major categories / championships

  1. Men’s Singles & Doubles – 2 Events
  2. Women’s Singles & Doubles – 2 Events
  3. Mixed Doubles – 1 Event
  4. Junior championships
  5. Wheelchair Men’s Singles & Doubles
  6. Wheelchair Women’s Singles & Doubles
  7. Wheelchair Quad Singles & Doubles

Apart from five primary championships other events also organized as mentioned above and each category has its own champion.

Brief History of US Open

US open has emerged from one of the oldest tennis tournaments, the US National Championship in 1881. It was started as a National tennis competition for Men’s Singles & Doubles. As discussed earlier that it was started for only US National Lawn Tennis Association club members which became open in 1968.

Women were also allowed to participate in 1887in singles, six years after Men’s. At the end of the 19th century (1899- US Women’s National Doubles Championship) Women’s Doubles & US Mixed Doubles categories were also introduced in 1892.

The Challenge system was in practice from 1884 to 1911, where the defending champion automatically jumped to the next year’s final and the winner of all previous rounds had to compete to win title. The almost same challenge was followed by the Women’s tournament from 1888 to 1918 except 1917.

All primary events of the US open were used to play at different locations until 1968. It was relocated to New York as a result of voting in the annual meeting of the US National Lawn Tennis Association (USNLTA).

It was then in 1924 moved to West Side Tennis Club in Forest Hills, Queens New York, and became the US open. In the same year, it was also officially declared as the world’s major tournament by International Lawn Tennis Federation.

It was moved to USTA National Tennis Center in 1978 with a switch of the court’s surface from clay to hard.

In 1968 both amateur & first time-professional players were allowed to compete for championships at the beginning of Open Era for US$ 100,000 prize money.  All previous championships were confined to amateur players but mixed doubles.

It became first grand slam tournament to equal prize money in 1973 in that year’s singles and first that had been playing every year since its beginning.


The US Open is administered by the United States Tennis Association (USTA), a non-profit NGO. It brings tennis talent from bottom to top, zero to a professional level.

The revenue collected by USTA form tickets, sponsorships, and contracts is used to develop tennis the welfare of the organization. US National Tennis center is also under its administration for the development of tennis.

Events Structure of US Open Championship

It’s played in singles & Doubles format as other Grand Slam tournaments. Total Singles & Quad Draws are 128 & Doubles are 64 for men & women matches. In singles R128, R64, R32, R16, Quarter Final (QF), Semi-Final (SF), and Final (F) respectively are played.

Doubles are started from R64 and Mixed Doubles are started from R32 to Final.

US Open practices standard 7-Points as tiebreakers in Singles matches the format in every set while other majors use a different method to break a tie.

Tennis Courts Of US Open

As briefed earlier the US Open is played at US National Tennis Center constructed in 1978 in flushing Meadows having DecoTurf which is fast Acrylic Hard surface.

It has three major courts as Arthur Ashe, Louis Armstrong, and Grandstand stadium having different features and seating capacity.

National tennis centre was renamed to “USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center” for homage to BillieJean King: a pioneer woman player and 4-times singles champion.

Arthur Ashe Stadium

Its main court and the largest in the world and in the US open history,  located at Flushing Meadows, Queens New York City having almost 24 thousand (23,771) seating capacity. It is part of USTA National Tennis Park. Its hard DecoTurf surface opened in 1997 and renovated later in 2016.

It’s named to pay tribute to renowned tennis player and winner o first US Open format match of 1968 in which professional players were allowed to play.

US Open Arthur Ashe Stadium
Arthur Ashe Stadium For US Open NY City

Louis Armstrong Stadium

It’s the second-largest court in the USTA National Tennis Park of the United States. It has 14000+ seating capacity also has a DecoTurf hard surface.

It’s named after a famous musician of jazz Louis Armstrong who was a prominent Civil Rights Movement member and lives in the neighbourhood of the stadium.

It’s ticketed in two parts as lower tier 6400 seats & 7661 as upper-tier seats. It was inaugurated in 2018 as an alternate of the same name stadium having a low capacity and demolished in 2016.

It was a main stadium before Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Louis Armstrong Stadium For  US Open  NY City
Louis Armstrong Stadium For US Open NY City

Grand Stand Stadium

It’s 3rd largest stadium at USTA National Tennis Park in New York City situated at the southwest corner Arthur Ashe Stadium. It has eight thousand seating capacity of 8125. It’s used as show court for this US Open.

It was inaugurated on the eve of the 136th edition of the US open which is 29th August- the first day of US Open 2016.

Several other courts are part of the US tennis park used for practice matches and other competitions. These are named differently as P1-P5 and Court 4-16.

Grandstand Stadium For US Open NY City

Reward for Winners

Prize Money for US Open Winners

As discussed earlier the total prize money in the last edition was $57 million in 2019 highest in history with a 13% increment than last year and $53 million in 2018.

Further, it’s distributed of total player base compensation as a percentage like 80.9% for Singles, Doubles 12.1%, Singles Qualifying 5.9%, 1.0% for Mixed Doubles.

Further details of the champion’s prize money of main categories are as under of last five years 2015-2019.

YearSingles (US $)Doubles (US $)Mixed Doubles (US $)
2019 3,850,000 740,000 160,000
2018 3,800,000 700,000 155,000
2017 3,700,000 675,000 150,000
2016 3,500,000 625,000 150,000
2015 3,300,000 570,000 150,000

Ranking Points

Ranking points for Men & Women are described below in the table for Singles & Doubles categories. Usually, men’s points are referred to as ATP Men points and WTA women points for the year 2019.

EventWinnerFinalSemi FinalQuarter Final
Men’s Single20001200720360
Men’s Doubles20001200720360
Women Singles20001300780430
Women Doubles20001300780430

Men’s Single180904510
Men’s Doubles1809000
Women Singles2401307010
Women Doubles240130100

History of US Open Winners

The US Open Tennis Championship has been won by champions from different countries in history. Here is a list of Men’s and Women’s Singles champions winners by year.

Amateur Era

When professional tennis players were not allowed to participate in the tournament.

Open Era

When professional tennis players were allowed to participate in the and tournament was renamed to US Open Tennis Championship.

Latest US Open 2020 event was scheduled from Monday, 24 August – Sunday, 13 September 2020.

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