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French Open may take place behind closed doors

French Open may take place behind closed doors”

The French Open could be held without fans later this year, the president of the French Tennis Federation said on Sunday.

The clay-court grand slam was postponed in March due to the coronavirus pandemic and put back to September. Earlier this year, the year's second Grand Slam tournament was controversially move to September with its unilateral decision drawing surprise from world tennis bodies and players. However, Giudicelli commented: "I have regular discussions with Andrea Gaudenzi [ATP], Steve Simon [WTA] and David Haggerty [ITF] and another call is planned next week to see how we have progressed".

The option could enable the tournament to take place and fulfil television contracts, which would provide crucial funds for the organisation. There is the tournament taking place in the stadium, and the tournament on TV screens.

'Millions of viewers around the world are waiting.

"It's not to be overlooked". During a recent interview with the Journal du Dimanche, Giudicelly revealed: "We haven't ruled out any option".

The FFT will refund all tickets bought for the original dates of the French Open by the end of this month.

Last week, Roland Garros announced it will refund all ticket holders for the 2020 tournament.

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Guidicelli is adamant that the FFT was right to shift the tournament back by four months with the death toll from the coronavirus in France standing at 26,310 by Saturday night.

The FFT was criticised when they declared in mid-March that the French Open could be switched, with players bemoaning a lack of communication as the new dates clashed with the hardcourt game.

The delayed beginning would give players a two-week window between the end of the U.S. Open, played on the hardcourts of NY, and the French Open.

That gives them the freedom to hold it without spectators - there are usually close to 500,000 - as well as making a further tweak to the new date of September 20 to October 4.

"The 20th or the 27th, that does not change much", Giudicelli said.

The US Open, due to take place in NY from Aug 31-Sept 13, is also in question with a decision expected in mid-June.

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