- French tennis star Alize Cornet was unsteady on her feet and then collapsed
- The 27-year-old pro then had to lie down in the shade behind the court baseline
- Fans took refuge in the shaded parts of the stadium out of the searing sunshine
Published: 00:54 EST, 19 January 2018 | Updated: 00:59 EST, 19 January 2018
A French tennis star collapsed at the Australian Open tennis as temperatures in Melbourne soared to 42 degrees.
Alize Cornet was serving in her third-round clash with her Belgian opponent Elise Mertens when the searing summer heat at Hisense Arena became too much for her on Friday afternoon.
She collapsed in the shade behind the baseline, lying down out of the sun, as Melbourne baked in 42C temperatures for a second day in a row.
French tennis star Alize Cornet was unsteady on her feet as temperatures in Melbourne soared
The 27-year-old Grand Slam pro struggled to cope with Melbourne's 42C temperatures and collapsed
The 27-year-old Grand Slam champion then stood up and wiped her face with a towel, a day after temperatures on the court arena had soared to 69C.
Cornet was already struggling and eventually lost in straight sets, 7-5, 6-4 on day five of the Australian Open.
The umpire had let her take extended breaks between points at Melbourne Park.
Spectators also struggled with the scorching heat, abandoning seats in the sun and cramming on to chairs in the shade.
Spectators crammed into the shade and abandoned seats in the sun as temperatures hit 42C
The former top seed tennis star was allowed extended breaks between points amid the heat
The heat was so intense fans needed water mists to survive another day of extreme heat
Several fans went to extra lengths to keep cool with a woman in the sun sipping from an esky.
Ice-wrapped towels and sprays of water were also used to alleviate the heat.
Tennis fans also struggled with the intense heat inside the arena while the rest of the city sweltered through 42C on day four and five of the international tournament.
One tennis fan in the sun resorted to drinking from an esky during another consecutive day of extreme heat in Melbourne
Other brave fans in tennis ball costumes braved the summer heat and sat in the hot sun
Spraying mists of water were used to cool down everyone at the Australian Open Thursday
Temperatures reached 69C at the court at Melbourne Park on Thursday forcing players, including Frenchman Gael Monfils (pictured) to cool down any way possible
Croatia's Donna Vekic (pictured) was one of many players using ice-wrapped towels to cool off
The city reached temperatures of 40C which affected some tennis fans during the day
One person needed medical attention during the heat of the day at the Australian Open
'The health of our players is of paramount concern, but we need to be consistent with the outside courts so some don't get an unfair advantage,' Australian Open tweeted.
'We are constantly monitoring conditions. Let's hope it cools down!'
The Australian Open extreme heat policy will come into effect if ambient temperatures exceed 40C and the wet bulb globe temperature exceeds 32.5C.
Day four of the open attracted more than 38,000 people which made it 10,000 less than the previous days.
Novak Djokovic beat Gael Monfils at the Rod Laver Arena where the court temperature almost topped 70C.
Many tennis fans took to social media saying they struggled through the heat that hit Melbourne Park.
Tennis fans also struggled with intense heat inside the arena, making most of mist fans
The rest of Melbourne sweltered through 42C on Thursday during fourth day of tournament
Monfils (right) lost to Novak Djokovic (left) as temperatures hit extreme levels of 69C on Thursday
Many tennis fans struggled through heat as did the players including Romanian Ana Bogdan (pictured
The unbearable temperatures hitting the arena come as the rest of the east coast swelters through a heat wave expected to last throughout the weekend
'Next two days tomato ripening heat, also turned Aus Open players red,' one person wrote.
'No one should be expected to be out in this heat let alone trying to play elite tennis. The children must also be suffering subjected to chasing and returning balls,' another said.
'The extreme heat happens every year. Unfair to players,' one person wrote.
The unbearable temperatures hitting the arena come as the rest of the east coast swelters through a heat wave.
Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide are expected to cook as the temperatures hit higher than 40C at the weekend and could last until Tuesday.
'… we need to be consistent with the outside courts so some don't get an unfair advantage,' Australian Open tweeted (pictured Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro)
Day four of the open attracted more than 38,000 people, making it 10,000 less than the previous days (pictured Martin del Potro)