Quiet please… The Australian Open (AO) Tennis Championships is set to make its way into the metaverse with a unique doubling of the blockchain project. Yes, no visa is required for this, Novak.
It is the world’s first technical, sports and crypto combination as the AO became the first tennis Grand Slam tournament to participate in both the NFT (non-fungible token) and the metaversal aspect of the industry.
In partnership with one of the leading crypto industry* metaverse projects – decentralization – Aussie Open creates a virtual event, as well as releases a set of 6776 NFTs Which has the benefit of including digital connectivity with small sections of the surfaces of the real stadiums of the tournament.
To create the NFTs, AO has teamed up with blockchain studio and metaverse specialist Run it Wild, along with consultant and strategist Web3 Rarer Things.
(*Wait… “metaverse”… what’s that again? Find out here.)
Art Balls – What’s All That Fluff?
Dubbed “Art Balls,” the NFT group is a collage art project designed by local and international artists and linked to live tournament data, according to AO.
Generative NFT projects typically use an algorithmic mix of various different themes, and Art Balls are no exception, featuring different color schemes, designs, and textures, including variations in the appearance of the fluff on the ball.
Perhaps the most unique thing about digital tennis balls is the fact that the metadata for each one will be attached to a 19cm x 19cm piece of each AO tennis court. If a winning shot from any of the more than 400 matches makes it to that plot, the NFT metadata will be updated in real time to include match information.
NFT owners will also receive an airdrop with footage of the winning spot, wearable virtual machines and Australian Open merchandise, according to a joint press release with Stockhead.
Additionally, when one of the 11 Championship Points lands on a plot, the NFT owner of that plot can claim and receive a Championship Point tennis ball from the match.
AO Tournament Director Craig Tiley described the set of non-fungible tokens as “an opportunity to be part of the 2022 Australian Open in a way that hasn’t been available before”.
“Integrating real-time pitch data with NFTs has never been attempted before and will provide great avenues for global tennis fans to participate as NFT holders in the AO,” Tiley continued.
Oscillation in metaverse
Meanwhile, the popular Australian Tennis Championships collaboration with Decentraland will include a virtual version of the AO area and courts to explore.
Guess that’s the next best thing to having hardcore tennis fans – according to AO, they’ll be able to roam their Decentraland avatar around the virtual area, complete challenges, watch historical AO content, and interact with other players and fans.
“We want the AO to be the most comprehensive sports and entertainment event in the world, and with the unique challenges fans have faced getting to Melbourne, we’ve quickly tracked our launch into the metaverse,” said Ridley Plummer, Australian Tennis Project Director.
“Taking AO into the metaverse is an important step in providing truly global access to our great event,” Plummer added.
The Australian Open runs from January 17 to January 30. The AO Art Ball NFTs will release on January 13, priced at 0.067 ETH (which is around $22.5 or roughly AU$16 at the time of writing). head here To learn more.