French Open

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Template:About Template:Use dmy dates Template:Infobox GrandSlamTournaments The French Open, often referred to as Roland Garros (officially: Les internationaux de France de Tennis, Roland Garros; also called Tournoi de Roland-Garros) is a major tennis tournament held over two weeks between late May and early June at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France. Named after the French aviator Roland Garros, it is the premier clay court tennis championship event in the world and the second of four annual Grand Slam tournaments; the other three being the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the US Open. Roland Garros is the only Grand Slam event held on clay and ends the spring clay court season.

It is one of the largest events in tennis and by far the largest clay-court tournament.<ref>Template:Cite web</ref> Because of the slow-playing surface and the five-set men's singles matches without a tiebreak in the final set, the event is widely considered to be the most physically demanding tennis tournament in the world.

History

Officially named in French Les internationaux de France de Roland-Garros or Tournoi de Roland-Garros (the "French Internationals of Roland Garros" or "Roland Garros Tournament" in English), the tournament is often referred to in English as the "French Open" and alternatively as "Roland Garros", which is the designation used by the tournament itself in all languages, including English. French spelling rules dictate that in the name of a place or event named after a person, the elements of the name are joined together with a hyphen. Therefore the names of the stadium and the tournament are hyphenated as Roland-Garros.

In 1891, a national tennis tournament began to be held, that was open only to tennis players who were members of French clubs. The first winner was a Briton—H. Briggs who was a Paris resident. It was known as the Championnat de France, which is commonly referred to in English as the French Championships. The first women's singles tournament was held in 1897. The mixed doubles event was added in 1902 and the women's doubles in 1907. This "French club members only" tournament was played until 1924. This tournament had four venues during those years (1891-1924):

  • Île de Puteaux, in Puteaux, played on sand laid out on a bed of rubble.
  • The Racing Club de France (in the Bois de Boulogne, Paris), played on clay.
  • For one year, 1909, it was played at the Société Athlétique de la Villa Primrose in Bordeaux, on clay.
  • Tennis Club de Paris (club opened in 1895), at Auteuil, Paris, played on clay.

Another tournament, the World Hard Court Championships held on clay courts at Stade Français in Saint-Cloud from 1912 to 1914, then in 1920, 1921 and 1923, and at Brussels, Belgium in 1922, is sometimes considered as the precursor to the French Open as it was open to international competitors. Winners of this tournament included world no. 1's such as Tony Wilding from New Zealand (1913, 1914) and Bill Tilden from the US (1921). In 1924 there was no World Hard Court Championships due to the tennis being played at the Paris Olympic Games.

File:Roland Garros 02 .JPG
Suzanne Lenglen Court at Roland Garros.

In 1925, the French Championships became open to all amateurs internationally and at the same time commenced being a major championship (designated by the ILTF). This tournament was held at the Stade Français in Saint-Cloud (site of the previous World Hardcourt Championships) in 1925 and 1927, on clay. In 1926 the Racing Club de France hosted the event in Paris, again on clay (site of the previous "French club members only" Championship). In 1928, the Roland Garros stadium was opened and the event has been held there ever since.<ref name="Historypage">Template:Cite web</ref> After the Mousquetaires or Philadelphia Four (René Lacoste, Jean Borotra, Henri Cochet, and Jacques Brugnon) won the Davis Cup on American soil in 1927, the French decided to defend the cup in 1928 at a new tennis stadium at Porte d'Auteuil. The Stade de France had offered the tennis authorities three hectares of land with the condition that the new stadium must be named after the World War I pilot, Roland Garros. The new Stade de Roland Garros, and its Center Court, which was named Court Philippe Chatrier in 1988, hosted that Davis Cup challenge.

From 1946 through 1947, the French Championships were held after Wimbledon, making it the third Grand Slam event of the year.

In 1968, the French Championships became the first Grand Slam tournament to go open, allowing both amateurs and professionals to compete.<ref name="Historypage"/>

File:Roland Garros 08 .JPG
Court number 2 at the French Open.

Since 1981, new prizes have been presented: the Prix Orange (for the player demonstrating the best sportsmanship and cooperative attitude with the press), the Prix Citron (for the player with the strongest character and personality) and the Prix Bourgeon (for the tennis player revelation of the year).

In another novelty, since 2006 the tournament has begun on a Sunday, featuring 12 singles matches played on the three main courts.

Additionally, on the eve of the tournament's opening, the traditional Benny Berthet exhibition day takes place, where the profits go to different charity associations.

In March 2007, it was announced that the event would provide equal prize money for both men and women in all rounds for the first time. In 2010, it was announced that the French Open was considering a move away from Roland Garros as part of a continuing rejuvenation of the tournament.

Surface characteristics

Clay courts slow down the ball and produce a high bounce when compared to grass courts or hard courts. For this reason, clay courts take away some of the advantages of big servers and serve-and-volleyers, which makes it hard for these types of players to dominate on the surface. For example, Pete Sampras, known for his huge serve and who won 14 Grand Slam titles, never won the French Open - his best result was reaching the semi-finals in 1996. Many players who have won multiple Grand Slam events have never won the French Open, including John McEnroe, Venus Williams, Stefan Edberg, Boris Becker, Martina Hingis and Lindsay Davenport. Andy Roddick, who once held the record for the second-fastest serve (249 km/hr) in the history of professional tennis and who has reached at least the semifinals of the other three Grand Slams multiple times, never reached the quarter-finals at the French Open (his best result was the fourth round in 2009).

On the other hand, players whose games are more suited to slower surfaces, such as Rafael Nadal, Björn Borg, Ivan Lendl, and Mats Wilander, and, on the women's side Justine Henin, have found great success at this tournament. In the open era, the only male players who have won both the French Open and Wimbledon, played on faster grass courts, are Rod Laver, Jan Kodeš, Björn Borg, Andre Agassi, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. Template:Wide image

Expansion vs. relocation

In 2009 the Fédération Française de Tennis (FFT) announced that it had determined that the French Open's venue had become inadequate, compared to other major tennis tournament facilities. As a result, it had commissioned the French architect Marc Mimram (designer of the Passerelle des Deux Rives footbridge across the Rhine River in Strasbourg) to design a significant expansion of Stade Roland Garros. On the current property, the proposal calls for the addition of lights and a roof over Court Philippe Chatrier. At the nearby Georges Hébert municipal recreation area, east of Roland Garros at Porte d'Auteuil, a fourth stadium will be built, with a retractable roof and 14,600 seating capacity, along with two smaller courts with seating for 1,500 and 750.

In 2010, faced with opposition to the proposed expansion from factions within the Paris City Council, the FFT announced it was considering an alternate plan to move the French Open to a completely new, 55-court venue outside of Paris city limits. Three sites reportedly being considered are Marne-la-Vallée (site of the Euro Disney resort), the northern Paris suburb of Gonesse near of the international airport Charles de Gaulle, and a vacant army base near Versailles. Amid charges of bluffing and brinkmanship, a spokesman explained that Roland Garros is less than half the size of other Grand Slam venues, leaving the FFT with only two viable options: expansion of the existing facility or relocation of the event.

In February 2011, the decision was taken to keep the French Open at its current location near the Porte d'Auteuil. The venue will undergo major renovations by 2018. Court n°1 will be demolished, while 2 new courts will be built. In addition, a retractable roof will be installed on the Philippe Chatrier court, and the size of the venue will be expanded by 60%.

Ball boys and ball girls

At the 2010 French Open there were 250 "ramasseurs de balles" which in English translates literally as "gatherers of balls". They are aged between 12 and 16 years old, and dress in matching shirts and shorts. The 250 ball boys and ball girls are chosen to take part in the French Open by an application and selection process, which in 2010 had approximately 2,500 applicants from across France. Upon selection the ball boys and ball girls participate in preparatory training in the weeks leading up to the French Open to ensure that they are prepared for the day they set foot on the professional tennis court in front of a global audience.

Prize money and ranking points

For 2013, the prize money purse was increased to €21,017,000 from €18,718,000 in 2012. The prize money and points breakdown is as follows:

Prize Money (2012)
Event W F SF QF 4R 3R 2R 1R
Singles Points (M/F) 2000 1200 / 1400 720 / 900 360 / 500 180 / 280 90 / 160 45 / 100 10/5
Prize money €1,500,000 €750,000 €375,000 €190,000 €100,000 €60,000 €35,000 €21,000
Doubles Points (M/F) 2000 1200 / 1400 720 / 900 360 / 500 180 / 280 90 / 160
Prize money* €360,000 €180,000 €90,000 €50,000 €28,000 €15,000 €8,000
Mixed
Doubles
Points NA NA NA NA NA NA
Prize money* €105,000 €53,000 €26,500 €13,000 €7,000 €3,500

* per team

Champions

  • Men's Singles, winner of the Coupe des Mousquetaires
  • Women's Singles, winner of the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen
  • Men's Doubles, winners of the Coupe Jacques Brugnon
  • Women's Doubles, winners of the Coupe Simone Mathieu
  • Mixed Doubles, winners of the Coupe Marcel Bernard
  • Singles Finals, records and statistics

The trophies are all made of pure silver with finely etched decorations on their side. Each new singles winner gets his or her name written on the plate holding the trophy.

Winners receive a replica of the won trophy. Pure silver replicas of the trophies are fabricated and engraved for each winner by the Maison Mellerio, located in the Rue de la Paix, Paris.

Current champions

Event Champion Runner-up Score
2013 Men's Singles Template:Flagicon Rafael Nadal Template:Flagicon David Ferrer 6–3, 6–2, 6–3
2013 Women's Singles Template:Flagicon Serena Williams Template:Flagicon Maria Sharapova 6–4, 6–4
2013 Men's Doubles Template:Flagicon Bob Bryan
Template:Flagicon Mike Bryan
Template:Flagicon Michaël Llodra
Template:Flagicon Nicolas Mahut
6–4, 4–6, 7–6(7–4)
2013 Women's Doubles Template:Flagicon Ekaterina Makarova
Template:Flagicon Elena Vesnina
Template:Flagicon Sara Errani
Template:Flagicon Roberta Vinci
7–5, 6–2
2013 Mixed Doubles Template:Flagicon Lucie Hradecká
Template:Flagicon František ?ermák
Template:Flagicon Kristina Mladenovic
Template:Flagicon Daniel Nestor
1–6, 6–4, [10–6]

Records

Record Era Player(s) Num. Years
Men since 1891
Winner of most men's singles titles Before 1925:
(French club members only event)
Template:Flagicon Max Decugis 8 1903, 1904, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1912, 1913, 1914
1925–1967: Template:Flagicon Henri Cochet 4 1926, 1928, 1930, 1932 Note: Also won World Hard Court Championship in 1922
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Rafael Nadal 8 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Winner of most consecutive men's singles titles Before 1925:
(French club members only event)
Template:Flagicon Paul Aymé 4 1897, 1898, 1899, 1900
1925–1967: Template:Flagicon Frank Parker
Template:Flagicon Jaroslav Drobný
Template:Flagicon Tony Trabert
Template:Flagicon Nicola Pietrangeli
2 1948, 1949
1951, 1952
1954, 1955
1959, 1960
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Björn Borg
Template:Flagicon Rafael Nadal
4 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981
2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Winner of most men's doubles titles Before 1925:
(French club members only event)
Template:Flagicon Max Decugis 14 1902, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1910, 1911, 1912, 1913, 1914, 1920
1925–1967: Template:Flagicon Roy Emerson 6 1960, 1962 with Neale Fraser; 1961 with Rod Laver; 1963 with Manuel Santana; 1964 with Ken Fletcher; 1965 with Fred Stolle
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Daniel Nestor
Template:Flagicon Max Mirnyi
4 2007 with Mark Knowles; 2010 with Nenad Zimonji?; 2011, 2012 with Max Mirnyi
2005, 2006 with Jonas Björkman; 2011, 2012 with Daniel Nestor
Winner of most consecutive men's doubles titles Before 1925:
(French club members only event)
Template:Flagicon Max Decugis 13 1902, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1906, 1907, 1908, 1909, 1910, 1911, 1912, 1913, 1914
1925–1967: Template:Flagicon Roy Emerson 6 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Daniel Nestor 3 2010, 2011, 2012
Winner of most mixed doubles titles – Men Before 1925:
(French club members only event)
Template:Flagicon Max Decugis 7 1904, 1905, 1906, 1908, 1909, 1914 and 1920 with Suzanne Lenglen
1925-today: Template:Flagicon Ken Fletcher
Template:Flagicon Jean-Claude Barclay
3 1963–1965 with Margaret Court
1968, 1971, 1973 with Françoise Dürr
Winner of most titles (total: singles, doubles, mixed) – men Before 1925: Template:Flagicon Max Decugis 29 1902–1920 (8 singles, 14 doubles, 7 mixed)
1925-today: Template:Flagicon Henri Cochet 9 1926–1932 (4 singles, 3 doubles, 2 mixed)
Women since 1897
Winner of most women's singles titles Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Suzanne Lenglen 6 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1925, 1926 Note: Also won World Hard Court Championship in 1914, 1921, 1922 & 1923
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Chris Evert 7 1974, 1975, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1986
Winner of most consecutive women's singles titles Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Jeanne Matthey
Template:Flagicon Suzanne Lenglen
4 1909, 1910, 1911, 1912
1920, 1921, 1922, 1923
After 1967: Template:Flagicon/Template:Flagicon Monica Seles
Template:Flagicon Justine Henin
3 1990, 1991, 1992
2005, 2006, 2007
Winner of most women's doubles titles Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Simone Mathieu 6 1933, 1934 with Elizabeth Ryan; 1936, 1937, 1938 with Billie Yorke; 1939 with Jadwiga J?drzejowska
After 1967: Template:Flagicon/Template:Flagicon Martina Navratilova 7 1975 (with Chris Evert); 1982 with Anne Smith; 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988 with Pam Shriver; 1986 with Andrea Temesvári
Winner of most consecutive women's doubles titles Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Françoise Dürr 5 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971
After 1967: Template:Flagicon/Template:Flagicon Martina Navratilova

Template:Flagicon Gigi Fernández
5 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988 with Pam Shriver; 1986 with Andrea Temesvári

1991 with Jana Novotná; 1992–95 with Natasha Zvereva
Winner of most mixed doubles titles – women Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Suzanne Lenglen 7 1914, 1920 with Max Decugis; 1921, 1922, 1923, 1925, 1926 with Jacques Brugnon
After 1967: Template:Flagicon Françoise Dürr 3 1968, 1971, 1973 with Jean-Claude Barclay
Winner of most titles (total: singles, doubles, mixed) – women Till 1967:
(incl. French club members only era)
Template:Flagicon Suzanne Lenglen 15 1919–1926 (6 singles, 2 doubles, 7 mixed)
After 1967: Template:Flagicon/Template:Flagicon Martina Navratilova 11 1974–88 (2 singles, 7 doubles, 2 mixed)
Miscellaneous
Youngest winner Men: Template:Flagicon Michael Chang 17 years and 3 months
Women: Template:Flagicon/Template:Flagicon Monica Seles 16 years and 6 months
Oldest winner Men: Template:Flagicon Andre Vacherot 40 years and 9 months
Women: Template:Flagicon Zsuzsa Körmöczy 33 years and 10 months
Unseeded Winners Men: Template:Flagicon Marcel Bernard
Template:Flagicon Mats Wilander
Template:Flagicon Gustavo Kuerten
Template:Flagicon Gastón Gaudio
1946
1982
1997
2004
Women: Template:Flagicon Margaret Scriven 1933

Television coverage

France Télévisions and Eurosport hold the broadcast rights to the French Open until 2014.

United Kingdom

ITV Sport holds broadcasting rights to show the French Open tennis tournaments from 2012 to 2014. The bulk of the daily coverage is broadcast on ITV4 although both singles finals plus other weekend matches are shown on ITV1. John Inverdale hosts the coverage. Commentators include Jim Courier, Amelie Mauresmo, Sam Smith, Mark Petchey, Nick Mullins and Fabrice Santoro.

Studio presentation for the French Open on British Eurosport<ref name="digitalspy1">Template:Cite web</ref> is hosted by Annabel Croft with the segment Hawk-Eye presented by former British Number 2 Jason Goodall. (Goodall was briefly ranked ahead of Chris Bailey, Nick Brown, Andrew Castle, Nick Fulwood, Mark Petchey, and James Turner, in May 1989).

United States

NBC's coverage of the French Open began in 1975. Other than a three-year stint on CBS, NBC has remained the American television network home of the French Open since 1983. NBC shows weekend morning early round matches in the afternoon via tape-delay. If a match is still being played, it will be shown live. ESPN2 or Tennis Channel cannot show NBC's tape-delayed matches. NBC also tape-delays the men's semifinal, broadcasting it in the late morning on the same day. They broadcast both finals live.

See also

Template:Portal

  • List of French Open men's singles champions
  • List of French Open women's singles champions
  • List of French Open men's doubles champions
  • List of French Open women's doubles champions
  • List of French Open mixed doubles champions

References

Template:Reflist

External links

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