Why Is the French Open Also Referred as Roland-Garros?

Published 05/21/2021, 1:38 PM EDT
PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 01: The Roland Garros logo is seen outside the VIP village on day nine of the 2015 French Open at Roland Garros on June 1, 2015 in Paris, France. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)


The French Open or Roland-Garros is the only clay-court Grand Slam tournament in tennis. But despite its singularity, the officially called Internationaux de France de Tennis (French International of Tennis) has divided tennis fans into two parts. And it is all behind a name.

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In English, the premier clay-court tennis event is called The French Open, similar to the Australian Open and the US Open. But for everyone else, the tournament is known as Roland-Garros. Moreover, it is the official label that the tournament uses in all languages.

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Why is the French Open also called Roland-Garros?

Since 1928, Stade de Roland Garros has hosted the clay-court Grand Slam tournament in Paris, France. The name Roland-Garros comes from a French aviator of World World I of the same name.

The hyphen between two pronouns is critical; it resonates with the French dialect rule for every place and event named after a person.

PARIS, FRANCE – MAY 29: Ground staff prepare the court during a rain delay on day three of the 2018 French Open at Roland Garros on May 29, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

Also, the French Tennis Federation, which runs the tournament’s administration, insisted media houses to call it Roland-Garros. Additionally, everything in the stadium carries the preferred name, including tennis balls, court walls, hats in the shop, etc.

On this matter, Nicolas Beaudelin, spokesperson of the FFT, opened up. “The organizers clearly want everyone to refer to the tournament as ‘Roland-Garros,” he said. “Because this is … where the tournament is played.

Inarguably, the name adds a tone of history to the tournament. Given its close-to-a-century-old tradition, the chronicle upgrades every coming year.

Overall, the tournament is 130 years old, a reckoning factor in itself. No wonder why every tennis professional wants to taste glory on its red soil and become a part of a long-running tale.

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History of Roland-Garros, France

The premier clay-court tournament is the second annual Grand Slam tournament. It comes to greet tennis fans at the end of May every year.

PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 09: A general view inside Court Philippe Chatrier during the ladies singles final between Sloane Stephens of The United States and Simona Halep of Romania during day fourteen of the 2018 French Open at Roland Garros on June 9, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Interestingly, every silver trophy of the tournament holds “Internationaux de France” carving on it, ending with the current year. For instance, Internationaux de France 2020, is translated as International Championships of France 2020 in English. It accounts for the original name of the tournament.

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Conclusively, it is fair to say that Roland-Garros carries a vast history of tradition and prestige, and the name has played a vital part in it. And its glorious story will continue for generations to come.

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Purav Joshi

794 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.

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