Nicolas Mahut in favor of staging French Open without fans


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Nicolas Mahut in favor of staging French Open without fans

France's Nicolas Mahut, 38, admits having no fans at Roland Garros would be a bit odd but he is in favor of staging the French Open behind the closed doors. The season has been suspended for over two months due to the coronavirus outbreak and the suspension will last until at least early-August.

The French Open -- originally scheduled for late-May and early-June -- was moved for a late September start as the hope is that the clay Grand Slam event won't have to be cancelled. Staging the French Open with fans in attendance appears to be a long shot but the French Tennis Federation is open to hosting the event even if that means having no fans in attendance.

"Roland-Garros, without spectators, with empty alleys, without atmosphere, it is not the same thing. We need the public. But from an economic point of view, it is vital for the Federation, for the tournament and for all the clubs.

If the camera is the only option, I'm in favor of playing it anyway," Mahut told Ouest-France, as revealed on We Love Tennis France. Mahut, who debuted on the clay courts of Roland Garros in 2000, has made the third round at the tournament three times over the course of his career.

Mahut, ranked at No. 3 on the ATP doubles rankings list, enjoyed more success in the doubles events at Roland Garros as he and Pierre-Hugues Herbert won the French Open doubles title in 2018. On April 1, Wimbledon got called off for the first time since 1945.

Now the hope is that the situation will improve and that the French Open and US Open will be staged at some point of the year.