Posted: Tuesday October 2, 2012 2:35 AM

Aussie Open prize money increases to $31 million

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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) - Australian Open organizers have increased prize money to a record $31.1 million for the first tennis major of 2013 in response to player concerns about compensation at Grand Slam tournaments.

Tournament director Craig Tiley also said on Tuesday that Rafael Nadal is targeting the tournament for his return from a knee injury. The 11-time Grand Slam champion partially tore his patella tendon and hasn't played since losing in the second round of Wimbledon in June.

Tiley said the $4.15 million increase was the largest from one year to the next in the tournament's history.

The move followed reports that some players were considering bypassing the tournament if prize money was not increased, particularly for losers in the early rounds.

 
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