The reduction from 5,000 to 1,000 in the number of spectators allowed per day at Roland Garros, imposed by the government due to the upsurge in Covid-19 in Paris, is a ” hard blow “ for the tournament, reacted its director Guy Forget Friday.
“We have taken note of the government’s decision, we are ready, all the players are there, but it is true that it is a blow for the tournament”, he declared on France Info.
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The Parisian Grand Slam, which had already had to revise its tonnage twice down since the beginning of September, from 20,000 spectators per day to 11,500 and then 5,000, begins Sunday after a week of qualifying without spectators.
New reduction at the last minute
This new reduction in public reception capacity, at the last minute, follows new assembly restrictions announced on Wednesday by the government for areas on heightened alert in the face of the resurgence of the Covid-19 pandemic in France.
Thursday afternoon, Forget had always declared “Hope to have 5,000 spectators”. “We are able to accommodate this population, however small it may be, for the moment 5,000 people, on a 12 hectare stadium”, he stressed, insisting on the surface area of the site and the outdoor courts to limit the spread of Covid-19.
But Prime Minister Jean Castex, guest on the evening of the show ” It’s your turn to speak “ on France 2, cut short his hopes by declaring in the evening: “We will apply the same rules at Roland-Garros as elsewhere. “
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This gauge does not apply to accredited persons (players, coaches, ball collectors, referees, journalists, organizers, etc.), “Subject to a specific protocol”, specified Matignon at the end of the evening.
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