French Open on course for September date, says head of French tennis

‘Roland Garros WILL take place’: French Open is on course to be played in September, according to head of French tennis… and there could be spectators at the event

  • Bernard Giudicelli said on Tuesday that Roland Garros will go ahead this year
  • The president of the French Tennis Federation was speaking to Gael Monfils 
  • But Giudicelli admitted it’ll be down to the government on the admittance of fans
  • French Open, which would usually be on now, is set to be played in September

The head of tennis in France has told the country’s top player that the French Open is set to go ahead in September, in a major boost to hopes of the sport’s return.

The declaration of French Federation president Bernard Giudicelli to Gael Monfils is the most emphatic assurance yet that the clay court Grand Slam will happen this year.

‘Yes I confirm to you Gael, Roland Garros will take place,’ Giudicelli said to the world number nine in the course of a conversation on the latter’s Twitch channel.

The French Open, which would usually be taking place now, is set to be played in September

FTF president Bernard Giudicelli confirmed to Gael Monfils that Roland Garros will go ahead 

This is in line with the increasingly optimistic noises being made about the international circuit coming back, with firm decisions expected to be taken in the next two or three weeks.

The FFT Chief had to concede, however, that the conditions in which the tournament would be held will be a matter for the French government to decide.

‘The preferred option is to have a Roland Garros with maximum spectators,’ he said. ‘Depending on health conditions, we will adapt to the directives the government gives us. The government will decide how many people can be there.’

The authorities in Paris, who yesterday opened up cafes and bars outdoors, look sure to insist on reduced spectator numbers.

Giudicelli was speaking to France’s top men’s singles player, Gael Monfils (pic), on Twitch

Currently the French Open is due to start on September 20, although that could go back a week. It may emerge as the centrepiece of a late, makeshift European clay season. 

This could see the Madrid and Italian Opens taking place, beforehand or either side, with reduced 48-player draws.

Tennis authorities are currently trying to fashion, Rubik’s Cube-style, a late season calendar that will all depend on Covid-19 numbers continuing to reduce in the wider world.

The fate of the US Open looks less certain, although there is a similar desire for it to go ahead.

There is a similar desire to stage the US Open in New York, which is due to begin on August 24  

That much is illustrated by a new plan emerging to move the Cincinnati Masters event, due to start in mid-August, to Flushing Meadows.

According to the New York Times, officials are looking at creating a bubble by having two tournaments in the same place within a four week span going through to September 13.

Restrictions are likely to be severe in New York, with a minimal amount of people on site and some of the more peripheral competitions like the juniors cancelled.

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