French Open: Of records and curiosity


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French Open: Of records and curiosity

Why is the French Open also called Roland Garros? The Parisian tournament takes place in a facility dedicated to the memory of the French pilot and aviator Roland Garros, the national hero of the First World War. He was the first pilot to fly over the Mediterranean Sea and first to install a front machine gun on planes, to be able to both pilots and shoot at the same time.

Like all other tournaments, trophies are awarded to the winners of the men's and women's singles. For men, the trophy is the Coupe des Mousquetaires, named to honor the memory of René Lacoste, Jacquet Brugnon, Jean Borotra and Henri Cochet.

For women, the trophy is the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen, named to honor the legendary Divine of French tennis, as well as the second court of Bois de Boulogne, where the women's singles final is usually played, named Court Suzanne Lenglen.

Serena Williams' famous catsuit, worn by the US in 2018, is probably one of the most original and extravagant outfits in the history of the tournament, along with Stan Wawrinka's outfit of 2015. We don't forget also the elegant outfits of the 20s and 30s.

The tournament is the only Slam that is played on clay court. Talking about main records, Rafael Nadal is the most successful player in men's singles, with 11 titles. In women's singles, the record holder is Chris Evert, with 7 titles.

Nadal also holds the record of titles won consecutively in men's singles (5, from 2010 to 2014). Suzanne Lenglen holds the record for consecutive titles won in the women's singles (4, from 1920 to 1923). Max Décugis holds the record of men's doubles titles (14, from 1902 to 1914 and in 1920), while Martina Navratilova holds the record for women's doubles titles (7, 1975, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988).

Max Décugis also holds the record of titles won in mixed doubles (7, 1904-1906, 1908-1909, 1914, 1920), the same record number as Suzanne Lenglen (1914, 1920, 1921, 1922, 1923, 1925, 1926). Décugis and Lenglen won the mixed doubles together of 1920.

Monica Seles is, with 16 years and 6 months the youngest tennis player to win the title, in 1990. Andrés Gimeno, with 34 years and 10 months, is the oldest player to have won the French Open, in 1972. The longest match in the history of the tournament dates back to 2004; the French derby between Fabrice Santoro and Arnaud Clément lasted 6 hours and 33 minutes! Finally, after years of waiting, a retractable roof will be built on Court Philippe Chatrier.