Open crowds welcome back to Melbourne Park | Ralph Lauren

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Australian Open fans will be welcomed back at Melbourne Park on Thursday with the Victorian government ending its strict lockdown.

The snap five-day lockdown, which started last Friday, will end midnight Wednesday after a major COVID-19 outbreak was averted.

Australian Open organisers confirmed on Wednesday spectators would be permitted back into the venues, in time to watch the women’s semi-finals between Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams, followed by Karolina Muchova against Jennifer Brady.

World No.1 and eight-time champion Novak Djokovic and unheralded Russian Aslan Karatsev play in the night match on Rod Laver Arena.

Australia has a number of doubles players in action including Samantha Stosur, who could be playing in her last Open.

She is partnering Matt Ebden in a mixed doubles quarter final against American Hayley Carter and Belgian Sander Gille.

Tournament officials confirmed the attendance for each session will be capped at 7477 – which is approximately 50 per cent capacity.

“We look forward to welcoming fans back to the Australian Open for the next four days and to finishing the event safely and on a high,” tournament boss Craig Tiley said.

“The COVID safe measures we had in place will continue, and we’ve opened up the zones so everyone can access the full site and enjoy both Grand Slam Oval and Garden Square.”

There are still tickets available online to both sessions.

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