Press Release

Posted by Dave Nagle on January 4, 2013

100 Hours of Australian Open Programming on ESPN Classic

PRINT VERSIONFILED IN: Uncategorized TAGGED: , ,

Great Matches and More, Starting Tuesday, Jan. 8

Tennis’ First Major of 2013 on ESPN2, ESPN3 Starting January 13

In January, ESPN Classic will present more than 100 hours of Australian Open programming – great matches, some on the day of a significant anniversary, plus tennis-themed editions of the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning SportsCentury series and other interview shows.

Beginning Tuesday, Jan. 8, at 12 a.m. ET (Jan. 7 at 9 p.m. PT), ESPN Classic will air Australian Open programming virtually around the clock until Friday, Jan. 11 at 8 p.m.  The marathon of more than 80 hours will climax with three memorable men’s matches from a year ago – the semifinals pitting Novak Djokovic vs. Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal against Roger Federer, and the championship between Djokovic and Nadal.  At 5 hours, 53 minutes, it stands as tennis’ longest Grand Slam final in history.

Later in the month, ESPN Classic will air a number of Australian Open matches upon a significant anniversary (5th, 10th, etc.), including Andy Roddick’s epic 21-19 fifth set vs. Younes El Aynaoui in the 2003 Australian Open quarterfinals (January 22, 9 a.m.), the Williams Sisters squaring off in the 2003 Women’s Final (January 24, 5 p.m.) and the 1993 Women’s Final between Monica Seles and Steffi Graf (January 29, 5 p.m.).

The 2013 Australian Open

ESPN’s 29th consecutive Australian Open will begin Sunday, Jan. 13, with more than 100 live hours on ESPN2 HD (50+ more in afternoon reairs) and 600+ on ESPN3.  Daily action continues each night with afternoon reairs through the women’s championship Saturday, Jan 26, and the men’s championship Sunday, Jan. 27, both at 3 a.m. with reairs later each day at 9 a.m. and in prime time.

Date Time (ET) Event
Tues, Jan 8 12 – 2 a.m. 1993 Women’s Final:  Seles vs. Graf
  2 – 4 a.m. 1996 Women’s Final:  Huber vs. Seles
  4 – 6 a.m. 1991 Women’s Final:  Seles vs. Novotna
  7 – 7:30 a.m. Up Close Classics:  Jimmy Connors
  7:30 – 8 a.m. SportsCentury:  Chris Evert
  8 – 10 a.m. 2011 Women’s Round of 16:  Schiavone vs. Kuznetsova
  10 – 11:30 a.m. 2001 Women’s Semifinal:  Capriati vs Davenport
  11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. 2001 Women’s Final:  Capriati vs Hingis
  1 – 3 p.m. 1988 Men’s Final:  Wilander vs Cash
  3 – 5 p.m. 1988 Women’s Semifinal:  Evert vs Navratilova
  5 – 7 p.m. 1988 Women’s Final:  Graf vs Evert
  7 – 10 p.m. 2005 Men’s Quarterfinal:  Hewitt vs Nalbandian
  10 p.m. – MID 1995 Men’s Final:  Agassi vs Sampras
Wed, Jan 9 12 – 2 a.m. 2011 Men’s Final: Djokovic vs Murray
  2 – 4 a.m. 2000 Men’s Semifinal:  Agassi vs Sampras
  4 – 6 a.m. 2003 Men’s Final:  Agassi vs Schuettler
  7 – 8 a.m. SportsCentury:  Steffi Graf
  8 – 10 a.m. 2002 Women’s Final:  Capriati vs Hingis
  10 a.m. – Noon 2010 Women’s Final:  S.Williams vs Henin
  Noon – 2 p.m. 1993 Women’s Final:  Seles vs Graf
  2 – 4 p.m. 1993 Men’s Final:  Courier vs Edberg
  4 – 6 p.m. 2008 Women’s Final:  Sharapova vs Ivanovic
  6 – 8 p.m. 2008 Men’s Final:  Djokovic vs Tsonga
Thur, Jan 10 12 a.m. – 5 a.m. 2005 Men’s Semifinal:  Federer vs Safin
  5 – 5:30 a.m. Jim Rome Classics:  Andre Agassi
  5:30 – 6 a.m. SportsCentury:  Zina Garrison
  7 – 7:30 a.m. Schaap One on One:  Martina Navratilova
  7:30 – 8:30 a.m. SportsCentury:  Martina Navratilova
  8:30 – 11 a.m. 2005 Men’s Round of 16:  Hewitt vs Nadal
  11 a.m. – 1 p.m. 1995 Men’s Quarterfinal:  Sampras vs Courier
  1 – 3 p.m. 2003 Women’s Final:  V.Williams vs S.Williams
  3 – 8 p.m. 2003 Men’s Quarterfinal:  Roddick vs El Aynaoui
Fri, Jan 11 12 a.m. – 5 a.m. 2009 Men’s Semifinal:  Nadal vs Verdasco
  5 – 5:30 a.m. Schaap One on One:  Billie Jean King
  5:30 – 6 a.m. Firestone Chats:  Tennis Legends Ashe, King, McEnroe & Connors
  7 – 8 a.m. SportsCentury:  John McEnroe
  8 a.m. – 1 p.m. 2009 Men’s Final:  Nadal vs Federer
  1 – 3 p.m. 2012 Men’s Semifinal:  Djokovic vs Murray
  3 – 5 p.m. 2012 Men’s Semifinal:  Nadal vs Federer
  5 – 8 p.m. 2012 Men’s Final:  Djokovic vs Nadal
Tue, Jan 22 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. 2003 Men’s Quarterfinal:  Roddick vs El Aynaoui – *
Thur, Jan 24 5 – 7 p.m. 2003 Women’s Final:  V.Williams vs S.Williams – *
Fri, Jan 25 3 – 5 p.m. 2008 Women’s Final:  Sharapova vs Ivanovic – *
  5 – 7 p.m. 2003 Men’s Final:  Agassi vs Schuettler – *
Mon, Jan 28 5 – 7 p.m. 2008 Men’s Final:  Djokovic vs Tsonga – *
Tue, Jan 29 5 – 7 p.m. 1993 Women’s Final:  Seles vs Graf – *
Wed Jan 30 6 – 8 p.m. 1993 Men’s Final:  Courier vs Edberg – *

* – Date of actual anniversary (5th,10th or 20th)

ESPN – All Four Slams, All In One Place

Tennis has been part of ESPN since its first week on the air and provided many memorable moments, but it has never been as important as today, with the US Open joining the lineup in 2009, giving ESPN all four Grand Slam events, something no other U.S. network has ever done, let alone in one year. ESPN has presented the Australian Open since 1984, the French Open since 2002 (plus 1986 – 1993), and Wimbledon since 2003, with exclusivity for live television with all other rights extended in a 12-year agreement starting in 2012.

ESPN debuted September 7, 1979, and the first tennis telecast was exactly one week later, September 14, a Davis Cup tie, Argentina at U.S. from Memphis with Cliff Drysdale on the call and John McEnroe playing.

ESPN3, now in 83 million homes, carries every major global tennis event on the men’s and women’s circuit, including all four Grand Slam tournaments, every ATP World Tour 500 and ATP Masters 1000 event and WTA Premier events featuring all the top-seeded players.  Also, ESPN Classic shows great matches from the past and the sport receives extensive coverage on SportsCenter, ESPNEWS, Spanish-language ESPN Deportes, ESPN Radio, ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine.  ESPN 3D aired its first tennis at Wimbledon in 2011. 

-30-