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The 10 longest Australian Open finals in history are about to be revealed right here. By definition, these finals were some of the most gripping finals of all time. The players involved were pushed to their limits, and many of the outcomes went right down to the wire.
Of course, many people remember the winners from these finals more than the losers, which is also the case when looking at topics like the worst Australian Open finals. However, the players involved both deserve recognition for their efforts.
For that reason, I’m excited to share the key details of the longest Australian Open finals in history, as explained below.
ATP – the 5 longest Australian Open finals
- 1 ATP – the 5 longest Australian Open finals
- 2 WTA – the 5 longest Australian Open finals
Many of the longest Australian Open finals explained here lasted over 4 hours, and a couple of them went beyond the 5-hour mark. Of course, such numbers are incredible, and we’ve been blessed to witness so many of the best Australian Open finals in history in recent times.
With that in mind, let me dive into the details of the five longest Australian Open finals for the men right now.
2012 – Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal
The 2012 Australian Open final involving Djokovic and Nadal was probably the single best tennis match I have ever witnessed. This match had absolutely everything, and it remains the longest Grand Slam final in the Open Era. Yet, when all was said and done, Novak Djokovic was the man left standing after 5 hours and 53 minutes.
He won the match 7-5 in the fifth set, although Nadal had the match on his racket since he was a break up in the decider. Famously, Nadal dropped to his knees after winning the fourth set, while Djokovic ripped his shirt off after winning the fifth set and the tournament.
2022 – Rafael Nadal vs Daniil Medvedev
Not only is this match the second-longest Australian Open final in the Open Era, but it’s the second-longest Grand Slam final overall. Therefore, it’s fair to say that fans at the Australian Open have been treated to some true classics in recent times. As for the specifics here, Nadal overcame a 2-0 deficit to produce one of the greatest Grand Slam comebacks ever.
Ultimately, he beat Medvedev 7-5 in the fifth set in a total match time of 5 hours and 24 minutes, which was a reversal of his fortunes against Djokovic ten years prior.
2009 – Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer
People tend to forget that Nadal won two epic finals at the Australian Open, which doesn’t bode well for his reputation concerning Australian Open finals. This one, however, was even more epic since he needed 5 hours and 14 minutes to get beyond Verdasco in the semi-finals. Therefore, going into the final against Federer, many fans expected him to be smoked.
The match lasted 4 hours and 23 minutes, and the quality was exceptional. Ultimately, Nadal emerged victorious by taking the fifth set 6-2.
2020 – Novak Djokovic vs Dominic Thiem
This Australian Open final wasn’t quite as long as the others, but it’s still one of the longest of all time. Once again, the final was played over the course of five sets, and Thiem held a 2-1 lead over Djokovic in this one. In typical Djokovic fashion, however, he came out fighting to turn the match around and win the title 6-4 in the fifth.
The match lasted 3 hours and 59 minutes, which is still very impressive.
2017 – Roger Federer vs Rafael Nadal
Personally, I consider this one of Federer’s greatest-ever Grand Slam triumphs over his long-term rival, Rafael Nadal. In this match, Federer was one set up on two separate occasions, yet Nadal pegged him back both times. This set the stage for a fifth-set showdown, and this time, Federer got the better of Nadal in Melbourne.
In one of the longest Australian Open finals at 3 hours and 37 minutes, Federer took out Nadal 6-3 in the deciding set, recording his 20th Grand Slam win in the process.
WTA – the 5 longest Australian Open finals
Since the women use the best-of-three format instead of the best-of-five format like the men, their finals have been understandably shorter. However, that doesn’t stop us from running through the longest Australian Open finals for the women, as discussed below.
2019 – Naomi Osaka vs Petra Kvitova
This was one of the most exciting Australian Open finals matches on the women’s side that I can recall. It had drama and great tennis, and Kvitova staged an epic comeback after staring a straight-sets defeat in the face.
She fought valiantly, yet Osaka won the match in 2 hours and 27 minutes by a score of 6-4 in the third set.
2018 – Caroline Wozniacki vs Simona Halep
Prior to the 2019 final, there was another incredible final played in 2018. This one involved Wozniacki against Halep, and it went right down to the wire. Wozniacki triumphed in a total match time of 2 hours and 49 minutes, making it the longest Australian Open final in the Open Era.
2023 – Aryna Sabalenka vs Elena Rybakina
Talk about drama – the end of this match was nothing short of amazing. Sabalenka needed 4 championship points to win this match 6-4 in the third, and this was her very first Grand Slam title. She brought her very best tennis to take down Rybakina in a total match time of 2 hours and 28 minutes, and to this day, it remains one of the best finals played in Melbourne.
2003 – Serena Williams vs Venus Williams
This match treated tennis fans to 2 hours and 22 minutes of sensational groundstrokes and huge hitting on both sides of the net. Of course, this rivalry between the Williams sisters developed into the stuff of legend during their careers. Yet on this occasion, Serena was the one to outlast her older sister, winning the match 6-4 in the third for her very first Australian Open title.
I’ve saved the best for last today. In what is still the longest Australian Open final in history, Martina Navratilova beat her rival, Chris Evert, in a thrilling encounter. In 2 hours and 55 minutes, Navratilova beat Evert 7-5 in the final set, and today, the game is still regarded as one of the greatest Grand Slam finals of all time.
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