In a move that stunned the tennis world, French
Open organisers on Tuesday postponed the claycourt Grand Slam at
Roland Garros from May until late September because of the
The switch has placed the tournament a week after the U.S. Open
final and results in clashes with ATP tournaments in Metz, St.
Petersburg, Chengdu, Sofia and Zhuhai as well as WTA events in
Guangzhou, Seoul, Tokyo and Wuhan.
It also clashes with the Sept. 25-27 Laver Cup, an exhibition
event co-created by Roger Federer which has always featured the
Swiss great and one of Rafa Nadal or Novak Djokovic.
Laver Cup organisers said they were surprised by the move to
switch Roland Garros to Sept. 20-Oct. 4 due to the coronavirus.
"This announcement came as a surprise to us and our partners --
Tennis Australia, the USTA and the ATP. It raises many questions
and we are assessing the situation," they said in a statement .
"At this time, we want our fans, sponsors, broadcasters, staff,
volunteers, players and the great city of Boston to know that we
intend to hold Laver Cup 2020 as currently scheduled."
The men's ATP Tour, women's WTA Tour and International Tennis
Federation have yet to respond publicly to the move but some
players have taken to social media to criticise the lack of
Canadian Vasek Pospisil, a member of the ATP's Players Council,
slammed the FFT decision as "selfish" and "arrogant".
"My issue with RG's decision is the process in which it was
done," he posted on Twitter. "The tour needs to work together if
it is the function properly. Now more than ever."
The United States Tennis Association (USTA) earlier released a
statement which said there were no plans to alter the schedule
for the Aug. 25-Sept. 13 U.S. Open and went on to obliquely
criticising unilateral changes to the Grand Slam calendar.
"At a time when the world is coming together, we recognise that
such a decision should not be made unilaterally," it read.
"Therefore the USTA would only do so in full consultation with
the other Grand Slam tournaments, the WTA and ATP, the ITF and
our partners, including the Laver Cup."
Wimbledon organisers said they were still proceeding on the
basis that the grasscourt Grand Slam would start on June 29,
while organisers of the Australian Open are continuing to work
towards the usual January start for the 2021 edition.
Organisers of the Korea Open said they had yet to hear from the
WTA about the implications of the French Open move on their
tournament, which was scheduled to take place in Seoul from Sept
"We are still in talks of adjusting the Korea Open tour
schedule, but nothing has been decided yet," an official told
Reuters. "The schedule would probably change according to
amendments in WTA calendar."
The coronavirus pandemic has infected over 190,000 and killed
more than 7,500 people worldwide.
The ATP Tour have announced a six-week suspension, the WTA Tour
have cancelled events until May 2, and the ITF has called off
all its events including next month's new-look Fed Cup finals in
(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, additional reporting by Joori Roh
in Seoul and Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bangalore, editing by Peter
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