The French Open has always been an event which is eagerly awaited by millions of spectators across the world. Held since 1891 in Paris, it is also known as “Roland Garros” after the French aviator and is the only Grand Slam that is played on a clay court.
France has been the home of tennis ever since the sport’s humble beginnings in the 11th Century when it was just known as “Jeu de Paume.” The love for this game transcends boundaries and in recent years has evolved to be the second-most popular sport in France. As clay is known to be the toughest surface to play on, this tournament is a tough test of the athlete’s fitness.
The French Open has seen many athletes try to stamp their authority but none have been as dominant as Rafael Nadal. Arguably the best athlete to ever play on the clay court, Rafael Nadal keeps breaking records year after year and has become virtually unplayable on this surface in recent history. Although the 2020 edition will forever be known for being marred with withdrawals due to the coronavirus pandemic.
It will still be remembered for a Rafa masterclass in the finals where he beat Novak Djokovic in straight sets to clinch his 13th Roland Garros title at the Stade Roland Garros. Another iconic moment in Roland Garros history belongs to Ivan Lendl in 1984, where he famously beat John McEnroe in a tightly-contested final. This would be McEnroe’s only final appearance in this event and this still remains a missing piece of silverware in McEnroe’s otherwise impressive trophy haul.
Full of amazing comebacks, high intensity matches and drama, Roland Garros never disappoints. Whether it is for the glory or just for the cash prize, the event is an excellent platform for budding athletes in this sport to showcase their talents to the world. The 2021 edition will be held in May, its usual spot on the ATP Calendar, where Rafael Nadal and Iga Świątek will be defending their respective singles titles.