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French Open
(Roland-Garros)
Official website
Founded1891; 133 years ago (1891)
Editions128 (2024)
94 Grand Slam events (since 1925)
Location Paris, XVIth arrondissement
France
Venue Stade Roland Garros (since 1928)
Societé de Sport de Île de Puteaux, at Puteaux (1891–1894); Tennis Club de Paris, at Auteuil (1895–1908); Société Athlétique de la Villa Primrose at Bordeaux (1909); Croix-Catelan de Racing Club de France at the Bois de Boulogne (1910–1924, 1926); Stade Français at Saint-Cloud (1925, 1927)
Surface Clay – outdoors [a] (1908–present)
Sand – outdoors (1892–1907)
Grass – outdoors (1891)
Prize money 49,600,000 (2023) [1]
Men's
Draw S (128 Q) / 64 D (16 Q) [b]
Current champions Carlos Alcaraz (singles)
Marcelo Arévalo
Mate Pavić (doubles)
Most singles titles Rafael Nadal (14)
Most doubles titles Roy Emerson (6)
Women's
Draw S (128 Q) / 64 D (16 Q)
Current champions Iga Świątek (singles)
Coco Gauff
Kateřina Siniaková (doubles)
Most singles titles Chris Evert (7)
Most doubles titles Martina Navratilova (7)
Mixed doubles
Draw32
Current champions Laura Siegemund
Édouard Roger-Vasselin
Most titles (male) Ken Fletcher /
Jean-Claude Barclay (3)
Most titles (female) Margaret Court (4)
Grand Slam
Last completed
2024 French Open

The French Open ( French: Internationaux de France de tennis), also known as Roland-Garros (French: [ʁɔlɑ̃ ɡaʁos]), is a major tennis tournament held over two weeks at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France, beginning in late May each year. [c] The tournament and venue are named after the French aviator Roland Garros. [2] The French Open is the premier clay court championship in the world and the only Grand Slam tournament currently held on this surface. It is chronologically the second of the four annual Grand Slam tournaments, [3] occurring after the Australian Open and before Wimbledon and the US Open. Until 1975, the French Open was the only major tournament not played on grass. Between the seven rounds needed for a championship, the clay surface characteristics (slower pace, higher bounce), and the best-of-five-set men's singles matches, the French Open is widely regarded as the most physically demanding tournament in tennis. [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]

History

Officially named in French Internationaux de France de Tennis ("French Internationals of Tennis" in English), [10] [11] the tournament uses the name Roland-Garros in all languages, [12] and it is usually called the French Open in English. [13] (The stadium and tournament are both hyphenated as Roland-Garros because French spelling rules dictate that in the name of a place or event named after a person, the elements of the name are joined with a hyphen. [14])

In 1891 the Championnat de France, which is commonly referred to in English as the French Championships, began. This was only open to tennis players who were members of French clubs. The first winner was H. Briggs, a Briton who resided in Paris and was a member of the Club Stade Français. In the final, he defeated P. Baigneres in straight sets. [15] The first women's singles tournament, with four entries, was held in 1897. The mixed doubles event was added in 1902 and the women's doubles in 1907. In the period of 1915–1919, no tournament was organized due to World War I. This tournament was played until 1924, using four venues:

  • Societé de Sport de l'Île de Puteaux, in Puteaux, Île-de-France (next to the Seine river); played on the club's ten sand grounds laid out on a bed of rubble. 1891, 1893, 1894 (men's singles), 1895 (men's singles), 1897 (women's singles), 1902 (women's singles and mixed doubles), 1905 (women's singles and mixed doubles), 1907 (men's singles, women's singles, mixed doubles) editions.
  • The Croix-Catelan of the Racing Club de France (club founded in 1882 which initially had two lawn-tennis courts with four more grass (pelouse) courts opened some years later, but due to the difficulty of maintenance, they were eventually transformed into clay courts) in the Bois de Boulogne, Paris. 1892, 1894 (men's doubles), 1895 (men's doubles), 1897 (women's singles), 1901 (men's doubles), 1903 (men's doubles and mixed doubles), 1904, 1907 (men's doubles), 1908, 1910–1914, 1920–1924 editions.
  • Tennis Club de Paris (club founded in 1895 which initially had four indoor wood courts and five outdoor clay courts), at 71, Boulevard Exelmans in the Auteuil neighborhood, Paris. 1896, 1897 (men's singles), 1898, 1899, 1900, 1901 (men's and women's singles), 1902 (men's singles), 1903 (men's singles and women's singles), 1905 (men's singles) and 1906 editions.
  • Société Athlétique de la Villa Primrose in Bordeaux, on clay. Only played in 1909.

In 1925, the French Championships became open to all amateurs internationally and was designated a major championship by the International Lawn Tennis Federation. It was held at the Stade Français in Saint-Cloud (site of the previous World Hard Court Championships) in 1925 and 1927, on clay courts. In 1926 the Croix-Catelan of the Racing Club de France hosted the event in Paris, site of the previous French club members only tournament, also on clay.

Another clay court tournament, called the World Hard Court Championships, is sometimes considered the true precursor to the modern French Open as it admitted international competitors. This was held at Stade Français in Saint-Cloud, from 1912 to 1914, 1920, 1921 and 1923, with the 1922 event held in Brussels, Belgium. Winners of this tournament included world No. 1s 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 tennis being played at the Paris Olympic Games.

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 aviator hero Roland Garros. [16] The new Stade de Roland Garros (whose central court was renamed Court Philippe Chatrier in 1988) hosted that Davis Cup challenge. On May 24, 1928, the French International Championships moved there, and the event has been held there ever since. [17]

During World War II, the Tournoi de France was not held in 1940 and from 1941 through 1945 it took place on the same grounds, but those events are not recognized by the French governing body, the Fédération Française de Tennis. [18] In 1946 and 1947, the French Championships were held after Wimbledon, making it the third Grand Slam event of the year. In 1968, the year of the French General Strike, the French Championships became the first Grand Slam tournament to go open, allowing both amateurs and professionals to compete. [17]

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. [19] In 2010, it was announced that the tournament was considering a move away from Roland Garros as part of a continuing rejuvenation. [20] Plans to renovate and expand Roland Garros have put aside any such consideration, and the tournament remains in its long time home.

The 2022 edition finally saw a new tiebreaker format. [21] If the deciding set is tied at six-all, the match is decided in a 10-point format. Should the tiebreaker game be tied at 9-all (or any tie hereafter), whoever scores two straight points wins. [22] The decision was made by the Grand Slam Board for all four Grand Slams "based on a strong desire to create greater consistency in the rules of the game at the grand slams, and thus enhance the experience for the players and fans alike", a statement from the Board read. [23] The 2024 edition marked the first time that a member of the Big Three ( Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic) was not featured in the final since 2004. [24]

Expansion

Court Philippe Chatrier during the 2013 French Open.

From 2004 to 2008, plans were developed to build a covered stadium with a roof, as complaints continued over delayed matches. [25] [26] [27] Various proposals were put forward to expand the facility or to move the tournament to a completely new, 55-court venue outside of Paris city limits. In 2011 the decision was taken to maintain the tournament within its existing venue. [28] [29] The expansion project called for a new stadium to be built alongside the historical Auteuil's greenhouses and expansion of old stadiums and the tournament village. [30] A wide-ranging project to overhaul the venue was presented in 2011, including building a roof over Court Philippe-Chatrier, demolishing and replacing Court No. 1 with a grassy hill for outdoors viewing, and geographical extension of the venue eastward into the Jardin des Serres d'Auteuil. [31]

Legal opposition from environmental defence associations and other stakeholders delayed the works for several years as litigation ensued. [32] In particular, the city council voted in May 2015 against the expansion project, but on 9 June 2015 Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo announced the signing of the construction permits, with work scheduled to begin in September of that year and conclude in 2019. [33] [34] In December 2015, the Administrative Court of Paris once again halted renovation work, but the French Tennis Federation won the right to proceed with the renovation on appeal. [35]

Renovation work finally commenced at the close of the 2018 edition of the tournament. Redeveloped seating and a retractable roof was constructed for Court Philippe-Chatrier and the new 5,000-seat Court Simonne-Mathieu was opened, having been named after France's second-highest achieving female tennis player, and noted for its innovative use of greenhouse encasing architecture. [36] The renewal of the venue has been generally well received by the players and the public. [37] The 2020 edition of the tournament, which was the first to be assisted by the roof over Philippe-Chatrier, was postponed to late September and early October and was played in front of limited spectators, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. [38] Floodlights were also installed over each of the courts in the precinct, allowing the tournament to facilitate night matches for the first time. [39] In 2021, the tournament was back in the traditional slot of late May and early June. [40]

Surface characteristics

Composition of the courts. [41]

The French Open has been the only major played on clay courts since 1978, when the US Open changed to hard courts. [42] [43] Clay courts slow down the ball and produce a high bounce when compared with grass courts or hard courts.[ citation needed] 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.[ citation needed] 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 other notable players have won multiple Grand Slam events but have never won the French Open, including John McEnroe, Frank Sedgman, John Newcombe, Venus Williams, Stefan Edberg, Boris Becker, Lleyton Hewitt, Andy Murray, Jimmy Connors, Louise Brough, Virginia Wade and Martina Hingis; McEnroe and Edberg lost their only French Open finals appearances in five sets.

On the other hand, players whose games are more suited to jumpier surfaces, such as Rafael Nadal, Björn Borg, Ivan Lendl, Mats Wilander, Justine Henin and Chris Evert, 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, Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz and only female players are Evonne Goolagong Cawley, Margaret Court, Billie Jean King, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Garbiñe Muguruza, Simona Halep and Ashleigh Barty. Borg's French Open–Wimbledon double was achieved three times consecutively. [44]

Composition of the courts

1. Red brick dust.
2. Crushed white limestone.
3. Clinker (coal residue).
4. Crushed gravel.
5. Drain rock.

Trophies, prize money and rankings points

Rafael Nadal holding the Coupe des Mousquetaires in 2006.

The trophies have been awarded to the winners since 1953 and are manufactured by Mellerio dits Meller, a famous Parisian jewelry house. They 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 base of the trophy. Winners receive custom-made pure silver replicas of the trophies they have won. [45] They are usually presented by the President of the French Tennis Federation (FFT).

The trophy awarded to the winner of the men's singles is called the Coupe des Mousquetaires (The Musketeers' Cup). It is named in honor of the " Four Musketeers". The trophy weighs 14 kg, is 40 cm high and 19 cm wide. [46] The current design was created in 1981 by the Mellerio dit Meller. Each winner gets a smaller-size replica and the original remains property of the FFT at all times. [47]

The trophy awarded to the winner of the women's singles is called the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen (Suzanne Lenglen Cup) since 1979. The current cup was awarded for the first time in 1986. It is, with a few details, a replica of a cup offered at the time by the city of Nice to Suzanne Lenglen. This trophy, donated by Suzanne Lenglen's family to the Musée National du Sport, was awarded between 1979 and 1985 to every winner until the FFT made a copy. Each winner receives a smaller-size replica and the original remains property of the FFT at all times. [47]

Prize money

For 2024, the prize money pool was announced to be 53.478 million, an increase of 7.82% compared to the prize pool for 2023 edition. [48] [49]

2024 Event Winner Finalist Semifinals Quarterfinals Round of 16 Round of 32 Round of 64 Round of 128 Q3 Q2 Q1
Singles €2,400,000 €1,200,000 €650,000 €415,000 €250,000 €158,000 €110,000 €73,000 €41,000 €28,000 €20,000
Doubles1 €590,000 €295,000 €148,000 €80,000 €43,500 €27,500 €17,500
Mixed doubles1 €122,000 €61,000 €31,000 €17,500 €10,000 €5,000
Wheelchair singles €62,000 €31,000 €20,000 €12,000 €8,500
Wheelchair doubles1 €21,000 €11,000 €8,000 €5,000
Quad wheelchair singles €62,000 €31,000 €20,000 €12,000
Quad wheelchair doubles1 €21,000 €11,000 €8,000
  • 1 Prize money for doubles is per team.

Rankings points

Men and women often receive point values based on the rules of their respective tours.

Senior points

Event W F SF QF Round of 16 Round of 32 Round of 64 Round of 128 Q Q3 Q2 Q1
Men's singles 2000 1300 800 400 200 100 50 10 25 16 8 0
Men's doubles 0
Women's singles 1300 780 430 240 130 70 10 40 30 20 2
Women's doubles 10

Champions

Former champions

Current champions

2024 French Open

Most recent finals

2024 event Champion Runner-up Score
Men's singles Spain Carlos Alcaraz Germany Alexander Zverev 6–3, 2–6, 5–7, 6–1, 6–2
Women's singles Poland Iga Świątek Italy Jasmine Paolini 6–2, 6–1
Men's doubles El Salvador Marcelo Arévalo
Croatia Mate Pavić
Italy Simone Bolelli
Italy Andrea Vavassori
7–5, 6–3
Women's doubles United States Coco Gauff
Czech Republic Kateřina Siniaková
Italy Sara Errani
Italy Jasmine Paolini
7–6(7-5), 6–3
Mixed doubles Germany Laura Siegemund
France Édouard Roger-Vasselin
United States Desirae Krawczyk
United Kingdom Neal Skupski
6–4, 7–5

Records

Rafael Nadal, the all-time record holder in men's singles.
Chris Evert, the all-time record holder in women's singles.
Record Era Player(s) Count Years
Men since 1891
Most singles titles Open Era Spain Rafael Nadal 14 2005–2008, 2010–2014, 2017–2020, 2022
Amateur Era France Henri Cochet 4 1926, 1928, 1930, 1932
World Hard Court Championships: 1922
French Championships* France Max Decugis 8 1903–1904, 1907–1909, 1912–1914
Most consecutive singles titles Open Era Spain Rafael Nadal 5 2010–2014
Amateur Era United States Frank Parker
Egypt Jaroslav Drobný
United States Tony Trabert
Italy Nicola Pietrangeli
2 1948–1949
1951–1952
1954–1955
1959–1960
French Championships* France Paul Aymé 4 1897–1900
Most doubles titles Open Era Canada Daniel Nestor
Belarus Max Mirnyi
4 2007 with Mark Knowles, 2010 with Nenad Zimonjić, 2011, 2012 with Max Mirnyi.
2005, 2006 with Jonas Björkman, 2011, 2012 with Daniel Nestor.
Amateur Era Australia Roy Emerson 6 1960, 1962 with Neale Fraser, 1961 with Rod Laver, 1963 with Manuel Santana, 1964 with Ken Fletcher, 1965 with Fred Stolle.
French Championships* France Max Decugis 13 1902–1909, 1911–1914, 1920 [50]
Most consecutive doubles titles Open Era Canada Daniel Nestor 3 2010–2012
Amateur Era Australia Roy Emerson 6 1960–1965
French Championships* France Maurice Germot 10 1906–1914, 1920 [50]
Most mixed doubles titles Open Era France Jean-Claude Barclay 3 1968, 1971, 1973 with Françoise Dürr.
Amateur Era Australia Ken Fletcher 3 1963–1965 with Margaret Court.
French Championships* France Max Decugis 7 1904–1906, 1908–1909, 1914 and 1920 with Suzanne Lenglen.
Most Championships
(singles, doubles & mixed doubles)
Open Era Spain Rafael Nadal 14 2005–2008, 2010–2014, 2017–2020, 2022 (14 singles)
French Championships* France Max Decugis 28 1902–1920 (8 singles, 13 doubles, 7 mixed)
Women since 1897
Most singles titles Open Era United States Chris Evert 7 1974–1975, 1979–1980, 1983, 1985–1986
French Championships* France Suzanne Lenglen 6 1920–1923, 1925–1926
World Hard Court Championships: 1914, 1921–23
Most consecutive singles titles Open Era Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Monica Seles
Belgium Justine Henin
Poland Iga Świątek
3 1990–1992
2005–2007
2022–2024
French Championships* France Jeanne Matthey
France Suzanne Lenglen
4 1909–1912
1920–1923
Most doubles titles Open Era Czech Republic/ United States Martina Navratilova 7 1975 with Chris Evert, 1982 with Anne Smith, 1984–1985, 1987, 1988 with Pam Shriver, 1986 with Andrea Temesvári.
French Championships* France Simonne Mathieu 6 1933, 1934 with Elizabeth Ryan, 1936–1937, 1938 with Billie Yorke, 1939 with Jadwiga Jędrzejowska.
Most consecutive doubles titles Open Era United States Martina Navratilova
United States Gigi Fernández
5 1984–1985, 1987–1988 with Pam Shriver, 1986 with Andrea Temesvári.
1991 with Jana Novotná, 1992–95 with Natasha Zvereva.
French Championships* France Françoise Dürr 5 1967–1971
Most mixed doubles titles Open Era France Françoise Dürr 3 1968, 1971, 1973 with Jean-Claude Barclay.
French Championships* France Suzanne Lenglen 7 1914, 1920 with Max Decugis, 1921–1923, 1925, 1926 with Jacques Brugnon.
Most Championships
(singles, doubles & mixed doubles)
Open Era Czech Republic/ United States Martina Navratilova 11 1974–1988 (2 singles, 7 doubles, 2 mixed)
French Championships* France Suzanne Lenglen 15 1919–1926 (6 singles, 2 doubles, 7 mixed)
Wheelchair: singles and doubles since 2007, quads since 2019
Most singles titles Men Japan Shingo Kunieda 8 2007–2010, 2014, 2015, 2018, 2022
Women Netherlands Esther Vergeer 6 2007–2012
Quads Australia Dylan Alcott 3 2019–2021
Most consecutive singles titles Men Japan Shingo Kunieda 4 2007–2010
Women Netherlands Esther Vergeer 6 2006–2009
Quads Australia Dylan Alcott 3 2019–2021
Most doubles titles Men Japan Shingo Kunieda 8 2007–2011, 2013–2015
Women Netherlands Aniek van Koot 8 2010, 2013, 2015, 2018–2022
Quads United States David Wagner 3 2019–2022
Most consecutive doubles titles Men Japan Shingo Kunieda
United Kingdom Alfie Hewett
United Kingdom Gordon Reid
4 2007–2010
2020–2023
2020–2023
Women Netherlands Diede de Groot
Netherlands Aniek van Koot
5 2018–2022
2018–2022
Quads United States David Wagner 3 2019–2022
Miscellaneous
Unseeded champions Men Sweden Mats Wilander
Brazil Gustavo Kuerten
Argentina Gastón Gaudio
1982
1997
2004
Women United Kingdom Margaret Scriven
Latvia Jeļena Ostapenko
Poland Iga Świątek
Czech Republic Barbora Krejčíková
1933
2017
2020
2021
Youngest singles champion Men United States Michael Chang 17 years and 3 months ( 1989)
Women Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Monica Seles 16 years and 6 months ( 1990)
Oldest singles champion Men Serbia Novak Djokovic 36 years and 20 days ( 2023)
Women Hungary Zsuzsa Körmöczy 33 years and 10 months ( 1958)
  • French Championships (1891–1924) was only open to French clubs' members. In 1925, it opened to international players, and was later renamed the French Open in 1968, when it allowed professionals to compete with amateurs. See WHCC.

Broadcasting and streaming

France

France Télévisions and Amazon Prime Video hold the broadcast rights to the French Open until 2027. [51] All 11 "night sessions" will remain exclusive to Prime Video. [52] Studio presentation for the French Open on France Télévisions is hosted by Laurent Luyat and is historically located on a terrace in a corner of the Court Philippe Chatrier. [53]

United Kingdom

BBC began broadcasting French Open finals annually in 1981 [54] (often in their Grandstand or Sunday Grandstand programmes). The BBC's coverage continued until 2011. From 2012 until 2021, ITV Sport televised the French Open in the United Kingdom. Eurosport began broadcasting the tournament in 1989. [55] As of 2022, Eurosport holds exclusive UK broadcast rights to the tournament. [56] Studio presentation for the French Open on Eurosport is hosted by Barbara Schett with Mats Wilander. Commentators include Simon Reed, Chris Bradnam, Nick Lester, Barry Millns alongside Jo Durie, Annabel Croft, Frew McMillan, Miles Maclagan, Arvind Parmar and Chris Wilkinson. [57]

India

In India, Star Sports had the exclusive broadcast rights of the French Open tennis tournament. However, Sony Pictures Sports Network owned by Sony Pictures Networks India has bagged the broadcast rights from 2022 onwards. [58]

United States

NBC's coverage of the French Open began in 1975. [59] Tennis Channel owns pay television rights to the tournament. Coverage of morning window (U.S. time) matches were sub-licensed to ESPN for broadcast by ESPN2 from 2007 through 2015. [60] In August 2015, ESPN announced that it would discontinue its sub-licensing and drop coverage of the French Open beginning in 2016, with network staff citing that because of the structure of the arrangement, its coverage "did not fit our successful model at the other three Majors"—where ESPN is the exclusive rightsholder. [60] Tennis Channel chose to retain these rights under its new owner Sinclair Broadcast Group, nearly doubling the amount of coverage Tennis Channel will air from Roland Garros. [61] [62]

In June 2024, it was reported that the U.S. rights had been acquired by TNT Sports beginning in 2025, as part of an overall deal with Warner Bros. Discovery that also includes a renewal of its pan-European rights with Eurosport. [63] [64]

Ball boys and ball girls

For the 2024 French Open, 280 "ramasseurs de balles" (literally "gatherers of balls" in English) are scheduled to be selected for the tournament. [65]

Aged between 11 and 16 years old and dressed in matching Lacoste shirts and shorts, the ball boys and ball girls are chosen to take part in the French Open through an application process, only available to those licensed of the French Tennis Federation, which in 2023 had approximately 4,000 applicants from across France. [66] [67] [68] Upon selection they are trained in the weeks leading up to the event. [69]

See also

Lists of champions
Other Grand Slam tournaments

Notes

  1. ^ Except Court Philippe Chatrier during rain delay.
  2. ^ In the main draws, there are 128 singles players (S) and 64 doubles teams (D), and there are 128 and 16 entrants in the respective qualifying (Q) draws.
  3. ^ Usually the tournament is held in late May to early June. However, there have been exceptions:
    • The 1946 and 1947 tournaments were held in July after Wimbledon following the aftermath of World War II;
    • 2020 was held in late September after the US Open following the suspension of ATP and WTA Tours from mid-March to August due to the COVID-19 pandemic;
    • 2021 it was postponed by one week also due to the pandemic after virus cases rose in France in March of that year.
  4. ^ Last Men's Singles champion from France: Yannick Noah ( 1983).
  5. ^ Last Women's Singles champion from France: Mary Pierce ( 2000).

References

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External links

Preceded by Grand Slam Tournament
May–June
Succeeded by