New balls please? There’s plenty of stock of the kids must have Jumbo size hi-vis yellow tennis balls in the shop window, a snip at €32 euros. Slight problem, there’s no kids around to buy them as only about 750 actual fans per day are on site.

I’m expecting a huge price drop come next week, unless the French Tennis Federation have a huge warehouse to store them until May 2021!

The Three Masketeers. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

“The Three Masketeers”

Face masks are compulsory throughout Roland Garros, except for players and umpires on “active duty”. Line judges however are not exempt.

Apostolos Tsitsipas has his own designer mask featuring his son Stefanos as he watched his struggle though his first round match on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

Too cool for tennis? Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd
Stefanos Tsitsipas. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

“Smile please, you’re on not -so- candid camera”.

Despite the deployment of hundreds of off court cameras, covering every conceivable angle, the host TV broadcaster always has to have an in your face up close and personal camera for what should be private moments as Danish teenage sensation Clara Tauson found out.

Needing on court treatment for a troublesome thigh injury on her way to a shock first round win over #21 seed Jennifer Brady had to cope with a camera snoop over her shoulder as the WTA trainer dealt with it. Whatever next? A voyeuristic camera following players to a bathroom break?

Clara Tauson receives treatment. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News
Despite receiving on court treatment from the trainer, Clara Tauson beats No. 21 seed Jennifer Brady. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News
Photo: Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

Greek Tragedy? But not for the Ump!

The usually flawless Greek umpire, Eva Asderaki the first female ever to be in the chair for a Men’s Grand Slam final in 2015 appeared to have made two blunders today.

Firstly TV replays showed she failed to spot a double bounce against ultimate winner Laura Sigmund over local favourite Kristina Mladenovic.

Mladenovic called for a football-style VAR system to be introduced in tennis.

Kristina Mladenovic. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

“It would be great to have that,” said Mladenovic when asked if video replays should be introduced in tennis.

“It’d be a pity to replace a human with a camera but to err is human. I don’t see how the umpire could not see it.

Unfortunately, she continues at Roland Garros but I do not.”

Kristina Mladenovic. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

Later another local hero Gilles Simon spent five minutes in heated discussion with Eva over a shot from eventual match winner Denis Shapovalov. Getting no response from the umpire, Gilles pleaded with his opponent to “come take a look when you are down this end of the court and tell me I’m not going crazy”

Gilles Simon discusses a line call with Greek umpire Eva Asderaki. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

The eyes have it.

Slenderly built Swede Mikael Ymer with Ethiopian origins looks as though he would be more at home in a marathon race keeps his eyes on the ball.

Although losing in straight sets , 0, 2 and 3 Ymer did play the shot of the tournament with a point winning “tweener”.

Mikael Ymer. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

The YouTube “tweener”

And finally…

the usually pampered players are now having to do their own housekeeping on court.

Due to the serious risk of spreading Covid, Players have to keep their towels in designated baskets placed at both ends and both sides of the court. They also have to “take their litter home with them”

Heather Watson with all her equipment. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News
Clara Tauson. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News
Laura Siegemund. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News
Mayar Sherif. Photo Roger Parker International Sports Fotos Ltd/Alamy Live News

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