May 5, 2020 / 7:51 PM / 25 days ago

French Open in talks with governing bodies amid rescheduling reports

FILE PHOTO: Tennis balls are seen in the Smashing Suns tennis club as the government loosened a seven-week-old lockdown due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Vienna, Austria May 2, 2020. Picture taken May 2, 2020. REUTERS/Leonhard Foeger/File Photo

PARIS (Reuters) - French Open organisers have been in talks with the sport’s governing bodies to fine-tune the tennis calendar amid media reports that the Grand Slam tournament is being delayed by a week.

“We took the decision in mid-March to postpone Roland Garros from September 20 to October 4. Since then, we have been discussing with the international bodies of the various circuits (International Tennis Federation, WTA, ATP) the optimum calendar for the second part of the season, which will be finalised with the various stakeholders very soon,” a French tennis federation (FFT) spokesman told Reuters on Tuesday.

French newspaper Le Parisien and tennis website tennis.com reported that the claycourt Grand Slam would start a week later, on Sept. 27.

The FFT’s decision to postpone the French Open from May 27-June 7 amid the COVID-19 crisis was widely criticised because the new dates clashed with the hardcourt season.

A Sept. 27 start would give players a two-week window between the end of the U.S. Open and the Paris tournament.

Reporting by Julien Pretot; Editing by Toby Davis

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