The Australian Open has partnered with American fashion label Ralph Lauren, to become the official outfitter of the tournament.
The new global collaboration will kickstart with the next tournament, due to take place in 2021 and will see all on-court officials, including ball boys, ball girls, and chair umpires, dressed in Ralph Lauren attire.
“The Ralph Lauren style and sophistication will bring a fresh new look to the Australian Open and the uniform designs reflect the contemporary, playful and premium AO brand,” said Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley.
“Our shared commitment to excellence, innovation and creativity, along with a deep connection to history and tradition, form the base of this exciting new long-term partnership.”
The Ralph Lauren apparel and accessories will be specially designed for the tournament and include garments such as polo shirts, shorts, skorts and caps. In line with the fashion brands sustainability efforts, the yarn used to make the clothing will be made from recycled plastic bottles.
The Australian Open reached 900 million homes daily across 215 territories last year, providing Ralph Lauren with opportunity to gain exposure from being connected with one of the biggest competitions in tennis, particularly in the Australian and Southeast Asian markets.
It also signals another addition to their sporting portfolio, having already secured deals with Wimbledon and the US Open and outside of tennis, Ralph Lauren is partnered with the US Olympic and Paralympic teams, together with two of golf’s four major tournaments and the US Ryder Cup team.
Meanwhile, Craig Tiley has also confirmed that the state of Victoria will host all major Australian tennis events exclusively next year, including the Australian Open, which is set to take place on January 18.
Upon arrival to Australia, players will have to undergo a two-week isolation period but will be free to move around after this and not restricted to bubbles.
Speaking to the Herald Sun, Tiley said: “The big news is that we are now backing one horse and that is Victoria, because this is where the Australian Open is.
“Now it’s a matter of working out with the Victorian government what the quarantining programme looks like, that it ensures the safety of the community and then of course the safety of the players coming in.” he later added.
Author: Jake Wilkin