The news was in the air, but now it's official: the Roland Garros in Paris, initially scheduled to start next May 17th, will slip by a week instead, so it will be held from May 24th (with the start of the billboard qualification) as of June 13, 2021.
The situation of the Covid-19 epidemic in France has in fact worsened in recent hours, forcing President Emmanuel Macron to proclaim a third national lockdown last Saturday. The press release published on the Roland Garros website reads: "In agreement with the French public authorities and the governing bodies of international tennis, the French Tennis Federation has taken the responsible decision to postpone the 2021 edition of Roland Garros.
a week long, with the tournament taking place now from May 24th to June 13th. In his last speech on March 31, the President announced that a program for the progressive restoration of cultural and sporting events, subject to the improvement of the health situation, will be established from mid-May.
Using this as a starting point, the FFT worked closely with the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports and the relevant government departments on possible scenarios for the organization of Roland Garros, while taking into account the international sporting calendar.
In this context, it seemed that the best solution was to postpone the tournament by a week. The qualifying rounds will therefore be held from Monday 24th to Friday 28th May and will be followed by those of the main draw, from 30th May to 13th June ”.
The decision to move the competition by seven days also means that there will be only two weeks before the start of the Wimbledon tournament, canceled in 2020, which starts on June 18. The knock-on effects on the rest of the ATP and WTA calendar of the year are inevitable, especially for the first events on grass which now see themselves threatened by the dangerous expansion of the season on clay.
Last rumors on the French Open 2021
There are now less than two months before the Roland Garros 2021 contest, the main tournament on clay and which has always been historic ground for all fans of this sport.
The general situation inherent to the pandemic in France is still quite complicated, there is talk of a new possible generalized Lockdown regarding the transalpine country and in particular in Paris, consequently although not mainly there is concern about the dispute of the tournament and above all about the presence of the public.
The president of the French tennis federation (FFT) Gilles Moretton talked about different scenarios regarding the Parisian tournament, trying not to comment on even the less pleasant scenarios but emphasizing that this particular situation does not depend on him.
Trying to shed some light on the situation, Moretton has made it clear in the first place that the cancellation of the scheduled tournament, from May 23 to June 6, is not in the plans. Here are his words: "We are studying different options for Roland Garros 2021.
There are various possibilities and in the first place we hope to have all the spectators. It is certain, however, that all the options are under consideration, we can have 100% spectators or find ourselves with stadiums without an audience.
We are talking daily with all those directly involved and we are waiting to see how things will go. For now, the times are as expected, but if there is a general Lockdown for the next two months, we too will be forced to take measures.
We continue to be cautious and wait, we will try to be optimistic remembering that the vaccination is proceeding and that we see the light at the end of the tunnel "Regarding the possible cancellation of the tournament Moretton stated that he does not even dare to think of such an eventuality.
Obviously, Roland Garros will not be able to have bubbles and quarantines like those of the Australian Open, for example, because it is preceded by several tournaments on clay. The favorite at Roland Garros can only be the Spaniard Rafael Nadal, winner of 13 editions and great favorite again this year.