Histroy

Officially named in French Les internationaux de France de Roland-Garros or Tournoi de Roland-Garros (the "French Internationals of Roland Garros" or "Roland Garros Tournament" in English), the tournament is often referred to as the "French Open" but always as "Roland Garros" in French. A French national tournament began in 1891; this was open only to tennis players who were members of French clubs. It was known as the Championnat de France, which is commonly referred to in English as the French Championships. The first women's tournament was held in 1897. This "French club members only" tournament was played until 1924. This tournament had four venues during those years:

  • Île de Puteaux, in Puteaux, played on sand laid out on a bed of rubble.
  • The Racing Club de France (in the Bois de Boulogne, Paris), played on clay.
  • For one year, 1909, it was played at the Société Athlétique de la Villa Primrose in Bordeaux, on clay.
  • Tennis Club de Paris, at Auteuil, Paris, played on clay.
  • Another tournament, the World Hard Court Championships held on clay courts at Stade Français in Saint-Cloud from 1912 to 1914, then in 1920, 1921 and 1923, and at Brussels, Belgium in 1922, is sometimes considered as the precursor to the French Open as it was open to international competitors. Winners of this tournament included world no. 1's such as Tony Wilding from New Zealand (1913, 1914) and Bill Tilden from the US (1921). In 1924 there was no World Hard Court Championships due to the tennis being played at the Paris Olympic Games.


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