PARIS, May 31, 2016
Roland Garros had to suffer its first washout in 16 years, as all matches scheduled for Monday were cancelled due to rain. Tournament director Guy Forget expressed his frustration in front of the media representatives in the afternoon.
“It is hard when you’ve been dreaming of that tournament for so long and you decide so early to send the players back to the hotels. They all have been warming up in the morning and waiting and waiting and asking you, Do you think we’re going to go on? What are you going to do with scheduling?,” Forget told on Monday afternoon after it was announced that all matches had to be postponed to Tuesday.
“You suddenly realize that at other places, they would play on center court but we have again to send the players back and hope that tomorrow play will resume. Once again, I think having a roof is a necessity. There is no doubt that we need to expand and modernize our stadium. We can’t be like that for many years. And although we have good hope that it will be done by 2020, I hope everything will go on in between now and then so that no one can just stop the process. I am a bit annoyed today, although I kind of smile sometime with the players. You know, it’s hard,” the former French professional stated.
“It is also about our spectators. We have seen hundreds, thousands of people waiting with kids with umbrellas and all the people will be reimbursed. We have a insurance for that. Our main concern is going to them. Some of those people we know flew, took the fast train from the north of France, south of France, been waiting for weeks and months to be here. Some of them for years because it’s their first time here. The least we can do is to give them their money back and hopefully they can come in the future. Our concern is not to lose money. The concern today is to give a good image of our sport and we have had struggle in the past. I think it’s not a good sign. I’m glad to speak in front of you today to carry on that message.”
Weather forecast for Paris in the next couple of days is also not the best.
“Tomorrow looks better than today, so I’m positive we will be able to play, which is a good start. We knew that today was going to be horrible. It went beyond what we imagined. That’s why we sent the players back so early. We are confident and hopefully we will be able to play tomorrow as much as we can. We will speed it up, start earlier. We start at 11:00. We will play on more courts. There will be more showcourts tomorrow. We will be adding Court 1 and Court 2 just to speed up the game and hopefully we will be right on time in two days,” Forget is confident to finish with the tournament on Sunday.