Roland Garros tournament kicks off

As the Philippe-Chatrier court will be transformed into a ring this summer to host the Olympic boxing events, the Roland Garros stadium is first preparing for the start of its legendary tournament. After an Australian Open dominated by Jannik Sinner and Aryna Sabalenka, the second Grand Slam of the season will begin on Monday, May 20, at Porte d’Auteuil.

Organized by the Fédération Française de Tennis (FFT), the Roland-Garros tennis tournament will start with the first day of qualifications, following the draw scheduled for Sunday, May 19.

In order to secure their place in the main draw, players will each need to win three matches over the course of the four days dedicated to the qualification period. The main draw will take place on May 26 and will conclude on June 9 with the men’s final. The women’s final will be held on Saturday, June 8.


Novak Djokovic Facing Turbulence

Under scrutiny, Novak Djokovic must overcome his recent failures. Since the start of the season, the Serbian tennis player has yet to win a title. This is extremely rare considering it is only the second time since 2007 that he arrives at Roland Garros without having lifted a trophy beforehand. Making it to the semi-finals of the Australian Open and Monte Carlo, Novak Djokovic suffered an early exit on Sunday, May 12, at the Rome tournament. He was defeated in the third round by Chilean player Alejandro Tabilo, ranked 31st in the ATP, in straight sets: 6-2, 6-3.

Struggling during this match, the holder of 24 Grand Slams is aware of his poor results and hopes to regain his form for Roland Garros. “I need to improve everything, really everything. It’s a bit worrying,” he said.

Nadal’s Final Chapter?

Always emotionally charged, this edition of the tournament could be even more so than usual for Rafael Nadal. Approaching 38 years old, the Spaniard could bid farewell to the French Open. Hindered by physical problems in recent years, his game continues to suffer. The holder of 14 titles at Roland Garros was also eliminated at the Rome Masters 1000, exiting in the second round against Polish player Hubert Hurkacz.

The tennis player caused a stir by stating in an interview that he might withdraw from participating in Roland-Garros. “If I can’t play at Roland-Garros, it will be very tough, that’s for sure. But personally, with all the emotions I’ve experienced there, I believe it would be even harder for me to play without being competitive. I don’t want to feel at Roland-Garros like I felt in Madrid or Barcelona, without really being able to fight,” said the athlete.

Following his defeat in Rome, he reportedly stated at a press conference that he was closer to participating in the French tournament than withdrawing.

French Athletes

While the international champions naturally attract all the attention, France also has its share of athletes.

Among the top prospects in the women’s draw, Lyon-native Caroline Garcia, France’s number 1 (23rd worldwide), aims to surpass the 2nd round, unlike last year. Meanwhile, Clara Burel (45th) and Océane Dodin (73rd) both delivered strong performances at the Australian Open (reaching the 3rd round and quarterfinals respectively), which they hope to replicate at Porte d’Auteuil.

It’s worth noting that Alizé Cornet, one of the faces of French women’s tennis in recent years, announced last April that she would retire after this Roland Garros. At 34 years old, the Nice-born player reached the round of 16 twice, in 2015 and 2017 at Roland Garros. A prestigious moment in her career, the champion notably defeated Serena Williams at Wimbledon in 2014.

In the men’s draw, headline names include Gaël Monfils (38th), Richard Gasquet (113th), now 38 years old, and Ugo Humbert, France’s number 1 with a world ranking of 15. The new generation also finds its representatives with Arthur Fils (34th), Luca Van Assche (97th), and Arthur Cazaux (75th), who notably won the Australian Open.

Continued Enthusiasm

Global interest in this sporting event that is Roland Garros is stronger than ever. In total, more than 170 television channels and platforms will broadcast the tournament in 220 territories. In France, the entire broadcast will be shared between France Télévisions and Amazon Prime Video. However, there have been some changes this year regarding the distribution of rights.

Last year, Gilles Moretton, president of the FFT, announced that France Télévisions had obtained the exclusive rights to Roland-Garros for an additional four years, from 2024 to 2027. The channel has also taken over the broadcast of matches played on the Simonne-Mathieu court, which was previously reserved for Amazon Prime. “This means that during the day, France Télévisions will have the entire tournament,” explained Gilles Moretton.

On the other hand, the online platform Prime Video will broadcast the matches in the evenings, totaling eleven sessions.


Featured Photo : © FFT

Passionnée par l’art dans toutes ses formes, Charline Point est une jeune journaliste animée par une curiosité féroce et une vive appétence pour la culture. Après plusieurs années dans les relations presse, Charline se lance dans le journalisme. Ses sujets de prédilection s’orientent autour du voyage, de la gastronomie, du cinéma et de la mode.


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