Guy Forget, the Tournament Director of Roland Garros, says they plan to host all the events at the Grand Slam in Paris this year except the mixed doubles and the legends tournaments as of now.
Guy Forget on the plans for the Roland Garros tournament
Speaking to Eurosport, Forget says, “For a while, we considered not playing qualifying.
But it’s part of the tournament. So there will be a qualification event for men and women, as well as for the juniors. For a junior, dreaming and possibly participating in the main tournament is a significant event and an important step in their progression.
The same goes for doubles and many people appreciate doubles in our country. Wheelchair tennis has also become very popular and we want to support it. The mixed doubles and the legends tournament are probably the only two events we plan not to organize this year.
And I think these players will understand why we have to have priorities, for health and safety and insurance reasons. And for the media, the sponsors, the public, we also have to limit the number of people.” Forget also outlined some of the steps that the organizers are taking to ensure the health and safety of the players.
“For the ball kids, of course, we won’t let them pick up the towels as they are used to. It is easy to understand why. We want to protect as much as possible, not just the players but everyone who will be there for this tournament.
Once again, we will follow to the letter what the Ministry of Sports and Health tells us to do. There will be tests. There will be toilets around the stadium so people can wash their hands regularly. We want to avoid contact as much as possible and keep appropriate space between people.
I think it will evolve between now and the start of the tournament. But we will do our best to make everyone feel confident and safe from the virus issues. All those entering Roland-Garros must wear a mask. There will be different paths that people can take clockwise around the main courts.
If you come with a friend or with your wife, you will have to leave an empty seat next to you. No family can have more than four places side by side for major courts. For the other courts, there will always be a seat space so we are considering a 50% gauge compared to what we usually have at Roland Garros.
If we can achieve this, we will already be very happy. And if the situation improves in the coming weeks or months, maybe we can sell a few more tickets. But for now, the government is telling us what we can do and what we can’t do.”
The 2020 French Open is scheduled to be held from 27 September to 11 October, with the qualifying event scheduled to be held in the week prior to this. Rafael Nadal is the 12-time defending champion in men’s singles, and Ash Barty is the defending champion in women’s singles.