Deciding-set tiebreaks will be introduced for the first time at the Australian Open next month.
In a move that follows Wimbledon and the US Open, Australian Open organisers have opted for a first-to-10 points tiebreak with a two-point advantage at 6-6 in the final set in the men’s and women’s draw.
The decision to no longer play advantage in final sets comes following the most extensive consultation in the tournament’s history, according to tournament director Craig Tiley.
“We asked the players, both past and present, commentators, agents and TV analysts whether they wanted to play an advantage final set or not, and went from there,” he said.
Wimbledon announced in October that it will next year have a standard first-to-seven points tiebreak when the deciding set reaches 12-12.
The US Open was the first grand slam to introduce final-set tiebreaks, with a first-to-seven-points game played at 6-6.
The French Open is now the only grand slam event still decided by a long deciding set.
Tiley said Australian Open organisers believe an extended tiebreak still had the potential to provide a special finale to an epic contest.
“This longer tiebreak also can lessen some of the serving dominance that can prevail in the shorter tiebreak,” he said.
“We believe this is the best possible outcome for both the players and the fans around the world.”
A traditional seven-point tiebreak at 6-6 for the first four sets will remain in the men’s draw.
In women’s singles, men’s and women’s doubles and mixed doubles, the deciding set of three sets will be played with a 10-point tiebreaker if level at 6-6.
The 2019 Australian Open begins on January 14.