FRENCH OPEN VENUE

Updated: 21 May 2010 15:29 IST

The world's most romantic city, Paris, throws up one more reason to woo tourists from across the globe as it hosts the showpiece clay court event - the French O

FRENCH OPEN VENUE

Paris: "roland2.jpg"The world's most romantic city, Paris, throws up one more reason to woo tourists from across the globe as it hosts the showpiece clay court event - the French Open. The Roland Garros stadium was built to celebrate the success of French Tennis. The four musketeers, Jacques Brugnon, Jean Borotra, Henri Cochet and Rene Lacoste won the Davis Cup beating the Americans on their home soil in 1927. However, France did not have a venue to host the Challenger round the next year and to accommodate huge crowds that were expected to turn up. Thus the authorities decided to build a new stadium and it was named after Garros, a World War I hero and the first aviator to fly across the Mediterranean Sea.

From just three courts in 1928 to now 23 courts, the Roland Garros stadium which is also known as Stade de Roland Garros has undergone massive expansions. The centre court is always the sanctum-sanctorum of any tennis stadium and the stunning Court Philippe Chatrier, which has been witness to many historic moments can accommodate close to 15,000 spectators. Its stands are named after the four musketeers named above. Court Suzanne Lenglen also offers a delightful viewing experience and has a capacity of 10,000. Lenglen was a French legend and won a whopping 31 Grand Slam titles.

The modifications and changes have enabled the stadium to fulfill the requirements of modern tennis. Recently, the French Tennis Federation unveiled plans of further expansion. The project, expected to cost 116 million Euros, will see a new centre court and the creation of a 14,600-seater arena around 500 metres from the current facilities. The arena will be equipped with a retractable roof that will enable play to continue during rain and allow matches to take place at night.
Topics : Tennis Andy Roddick Lukas Dlouhy Rohan Bopanna Leander Paes Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi Maria Sharapova
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