The French Open, often referred to as 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. Roland Garros is the only Grand Slam event held on clay, 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 the Championnat de France, which is commonly referred to in English as the French Championships, was begun. It was only open to players who were members of French clubs. The first winner was a Briton—H, the first womens singles tournament, with four entries, was held in 1897. The mixed doubles event was added in 1902 and the doubles in 1907. This French club members only tournament was played until 1924, using four different venues during that period, Île de Puteaux, in Puteaux, the Racing Club de France, played on clay. For one year,1909, it was played at the Société Athlétique de la Villa Primrose in Bordeaux, Tennis Club de Paris, at Auteuil, Paris, played on clay. Another tournament, the World Hard Court Championships, is considered the precursor to the French Open as it was open to international competitors. Winners of this tournament included world no, 1s such as Tony Wilding from New Zealand and Bill Tilden from the US. In 1924 there was no World Hard Court Championships due to tennis being played at the Paris Olympic Games, in 1925, the French Championships became open to all amateurs internationally and was designated a major championship by the ILTF. It was held at the Stade Français in Saint-Cloud in 1925 and 1927, in 1926 the Racing Club de France hosted the event in Paris, site of the previous French club members only Championship, also on clay. In 1928, the Roland Garros stadium was opened and the event has held there ever since. After the Mousquetaires or Philadelphia Four won the Davis Cup on American soil in 1927, 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 hosted that Davis Cup challenge, during World War II the tournament was held from 1941 through 1945 on the same grounds but these editions are not recognized by the French governing body, Fédération Française de Tennis. From 1946 through 1947, the French Championships were held after Wimbledon, in 1968, the French Championships became the first Grand Slam tournament to go open, allowing both amateurs and professionals to compete. Since 1981, new prizes have been presented, the Prix Orange, the Prix Citron, 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 opening, the traditional Benny Berthet exhibition day takes place
Court number 2 at the French Open.
Suzanne Lenglen Court at Roland Garros.
Image: Paris FR 75 Roland Garros 2 juin 2014 Nadal 23