A Monash expert is available to provide commentary on the Australian Open, including the line-up and the Victorian Government’s funding of the Open and other sporting events.
Dr Tom Heenan, Lecturer, Sport and Australian Studies in the Monash Intercultural Lab, Faculty of Arts
Contact: +61 439 047 118 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Read more of Dr Heenan’s commentary at Monash Lens
The following can be attributed to Dr Heenan:
“One of the sport’s most expensive circuses has rolled into town, but the cast looks a bit threadbare this year. Novak is still around but there is no Rafa or Roger, or Ash and the Williams sisters. The line-up seems hardly worth the multiple millions in prize money.
“With Tennis Australia chief, Craig Tiley, aiming for a future prize pool of $AU100 million, the sky seems the limit. With so much money on offer, why then did the Victorian Government decide to surrender a loan to Tennis Australia?
“This is not the first time, and nor will it be the last, when governments have stumped-up monies for sporting events and venues. Melbourne Park and Tennis Australia have done nicely out of such largesse, as have other sporting bodies.
“As with other cities around the globe, Melbourne has been transformed by this type of ‘grift’ that has seen public monies and space funnelled into private and not-for-profits’ hands. There seems little sign of the 'grift' abating, with sporting organisations lobbying for more monies and greater control over public space, and architects and developers standing by to lego-scape the surrounding lands. The one consolation is that Melbourne is not hosting an Olympics or a Commonwealth Games.”