Fox News Weather Center

Players face intense heat at start of Australian Open Monday

Players and fans will have to prepare for intense heat for the first two days of the Australian Open in Melbourne.

"Hot and breezy conditions will accompany the start of the Australian Open on Monday and Tuesday," AccuWeather Meteorologist Rob Richards said.

Temperatures are set to soar to the mid-30s C (mid-90s F) on Monday and then around 38 C (100 F) on Tuesday. A gusty breeze and the absence of high humidity will prevent the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature from being significantly higher.

Highs in the mid-20s C (upper 70s F) are more common in Melbourne this time of year.

Fans and players will want to take the necessary precautions, including drinking plenty of water and wearing light-colored clothing, to protect themselves from heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

"Water fountains are provided around Melbourne Park for the benefit of patrons," the official website of the Australian Open said.

Melbourne Park, home to the Australian Open, has three courts with retractable roofs. Other courts used by the tournament offer no protection against adverse weather.

"The Australian Open has an Extreme Heat Policy," the website said. That goes into effect, "once the ambient (surrounding temperature) exceeds 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) and the Wet Bulb Global Temperature reading exceeds 32.5 C (90.5 F)."

The Wet Bulb Global Temperature accounts for temperature, humidity, sun angle, solar radiation and wind speed. Some of those same components are used to calculate the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature.

Heat already affected this year's Australian Open, according to the tournament's website. Day one of the men's qualifying round was suspended on Wednesday.

Data from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology indicates that temperatures at Melbourne's Olympic Park peaked at 42.2 C (108 F) on Wednesday.

Relief from the heat at the beginning of the tournament will come at midweek.

"A cooldown will start Tuesday night into Wednesday due to a cold front that will cause showers and possibly a thunderstorm. That can lead to delays in play," Richards said.

High temperatures will be closer to normal at midweek.

While a shower or thunderstorm may persist into Thursday, heat is not expected to return later in the week or next weekend.