With COVID-19 cases rising in Paris, the French Open opted to move their tournament back one week. The tournament was to begin on May 23, but will now start May 30.
The second week of the French currently is also occupied by grass events in Den Bosch and Stuttgart, both ATP, and WTA’s Nottingham. Last year, no grass events were played.
With the Olympics in late July and the clay season already underway, unlike last year, it would be much more difficult for the French to move again, perhaps to a later date in October. Therefore, there’s little wiggle room for the French.
Wimbledon is set for a June 28 start, so the gap between the two Slams is back to two weeks this year.
The event was swayed by recent statements from the president:
French President announced that a schedule to progressively get cultural and sporting events back up and running would be set up from mid-May onwards, subject to the improvement of the health situation.
Using this as their starting point, the FFT worked in close collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport and the relevant government services on potential scenarios for organizing Roland-Garros, while taking the international sporting calendar into account.
In this context, it appeared that postponing the tournament by one week would be the best solution. Hence the qualifying rounds will be held from Monday 24 to Friday 28 May and will be followed by the main draw, from Sunday 30 May to Sunday 13 June.
“I am delighted that the discussions with the public authorities, the governing bodies of international tennis, our partners and broadcasters, and the ongoing work with the WTA and ATP, have made it possible for us to postpone the 2021 Roland-Garros tournament by a week. I thank them for this.
“It will give the health situation more time to improve and should optimise our chances of welcoming spectators at Roland-Garros, into our newly-transformed stadium that now covers more than 30 acres. For the fans, the players and the atmosphere, the presence of spectators is vital for our tournament, the spring’s most important international sporting event,” said Gilles Moretton, President of the FFT.
The ATP/WTA supported the move.
“Both the ATP and WTA are working in consultation with all parties impacted by the postponement to optimise the calendar for players, tournaments, and fans, in the lead up to and following Roland-Garros. Further updates will be communicated in due course,” the tours said in a joint statement.
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