French Open deferred is a possibility – sports minister

PARIS, (Reuters) – French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu said it was possible the French Open Championship could be posted for the second year in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis.

France went into a third nationwide lockout on Saturday to contain the coronavirus spread, although professional sports have largely been spared. An exception is the Paris-Roubaix one-day cycling, which has been suspended from its original April 11 slot.

The French Open Championship, which was delayed last year by four months and held in front of limited crowds, is expected to begin on 23 May.

“We are in discussion with them (the French Tennis Federation, who are organizing the event) to see if we should change the date to suit a possible resume of all major sports and events,” Maracineanu told France Radio info late on Saturday.

“Today, although high level sport has been retained, we are trying to limit the risks of clusters, of spreading the virus within professional sports.”

President Emmanuel Macron said Wednesday that he expects to reopen the country in mid-May.

French Tennis Federation director general Gilles Moreton said earlier this week that he could not imagine the Grand Slam tournament being canceled.