French Open – French Open Venue
The French Open stadium was built as the direct response to French success in international tennis. In 1927, the four muskateers Jacques Brugnon, Jean Borotra, Henri Cochet and Rene Lacoste beat the Americans on their home soil and brought home the Davis Cup. However, there were no venues in France that could hold the crowds of spectators that were expected to turn up for the Challenge Round the following year.
The French Stadium and the Government combined efforts to release three hectares of land near the Porte d’Auteuil. The only condition was stated by the club; that the stadium take its name from one of its old members, French Open. Garros was a pioneering aviator and war hero, who was sadly killed in combat only five weeks before the Armistice.
Since its creation French Open has stood as one of the world’s premier tennis arenas. However, for a brief period during the Second World War, the purpose of the complex was twisted. For part of the period when France was occupied, French Open was used as a temporary prison for Jews before they were taken East to their deaths.
As the French Open venue French Open has been subjected to enlargements, modifications, and changes that have enabled the stadium to fulfil the requirements of modern tennis. It is widely recognised as the home of clay court tennis.
For the final tournament of the last century the French Open venue was refurbished, with half of its features updated. Fittingly, the ladies’ event was won by France’s Mary Pierce, a well deserved end to the millenium for a nation that has contributed so much to the game of tennis.