For the second consecutive year, Roland Garros does not start on the originally planned start date.
Originally indicated by The teamthis year’s delay is just one week, compared to the four-month period in 2020 from May to September.
Still, pushing back the traditional start of the Sunday main tournament from May 23 to May 30 is a clear indication that there are serious concerns among the French government and the national tennis federation about the viability of tournaments during a pandemic, which should come as no surprise given the third national from Frances. lockdown in response to rising coronavirus cases. The four-week lockdown, which began on April 3, will last the entire month, but is subject to extension.
“ In agreement with the French public authorities and the governing bodies of international tennis, the French Tennis Federation has made the responsible decision to postpone the Roland-Garros tournament by one week in 2021, which will now take place from 24 May. [Editor’s Note: the start of qualifying] until June 13, ‘said a statement from Roland Garros.
WATCH: Aliz Cornet reacts negatively to hearing the news for the first time (question starts at 2:56)
The hope and expectation is that by having an extra week in preparation, Roland Garros will receive a greater number of fans and more hospitality than would have been granted on the original dates.
“This 2021 edition of Roland-Garros aims to maximize the chances for the players and for the overall tennis community that the tournament will be played to the widest possible number of fans, while ensuring health and safety,” the statement said. “Regarding both goals, every week is important and can make a difference.”
In stark contrast to the tournament’s unilateral move to last fall, this adjustment is supported by the Grand Slam Board.
“This decision has been discussed with the Grand Slam Board and, given the exceptional circumstances, is fully supported by the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open,” said a statement from Wimbledon written on behalf of all four Grand Slam presidents and presidents.
It was not immediately clear how the move will affect the grass season in June, although the Wimbledon dates on which the main draw starts on June 28 will not change.
There are still grass tournaments scheduled to start on June 7 in ‘s-Hertogenbosch (ATP and WTA), Nottingham (WTA) and Stuttgart (ATP). Quentin Moynet reported if the trio of events are forced to cancel or postpone, the French tennis federation should compensate them financially.
But it is conceivable that the tournaments could continue in addition to the second week of Roland Garros; there are many players who are currently out and would like to start preparing on grass.
We will continue to update this evolving story.
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