Celebrating tennis off the court
Training sessions have been suspended, athletes have been in isolation and tournaments have been postponed. The Covid-19 health crisis has not spared the sports sector, including Roland-Garros, which had to be put off until autumn 2020.
BNP Paribas, a longtime sponsor of the tournament, decided early in the health crisis to support the tennis community by promoting "give and take" and sharing a love of tennis. It did this by planning events with a dual objective, i.e. engage sports lovers and promote collective support for front-line workers.
promoting "give and take" and sharing a love of tennis.
First initiative: A live video program on Instagram called #RGLegendsTalks, giving fans a chance to interact with legendary tennis players
The #RGLegendsTalks program by BNP Paribas will run during the original timeframe of this year's French Open. Every evening between May 26 and June 9, fans can connect to the "We Are Tennis" Instagram account at 7 or 8 p.m. (Paris time) and chat live with a legend of women's or men's tennis.
Here's your chance to relive great moments of Roland-Garros and hear champions like Martina Navratilova, Stefan Edberg, John McEnroe, Mary Pierce and Ivan Lendl give tips, talk about their own experience and recount anecdotes.
See program (Paris time)
May 26 at 7 p.m.: Martina Navratilova (the women's champion with the most Roland-Garros titles, having won the doubles six times and the singles twice)
May 28 at 8 p.m.: Stefan Edberg (finalist at Roland-Garros in 1989)
May 29 at 8 p.m.: Boris Becker (former world No. 1, singles semifinalist at Roland-Garros in 1989 and 1991)
May 31 at 7 p.m.: Justine Hénin (4 titles at Roland-Garros, the last time in 2007)
June 1 at 8 p.m.: Jim Courier (2 titles at Roland-Garros in 1991 and 1992)
June 2 at 8 p.m.: Chris Evert (former world No. 1, singles winner at Roland-Garros seven times, the last time in 1986)
June 3 at 8 p.m.: Marat Safin (former world No. 1, singles semifinalist at Roland-Garros in 2002)
June 4 at 7 p.m.: John McEnroe (former world No. 1, singles finalist at Roland-Garros in 1984)
June 8 at 8 p.m.: Ivan Lendl (singles winner at Roland-Garros in 1984, 1986 and 1987)
June 9 at 8 p.m.: Mary Pierce (singles winner at Roland-Garros in 2000)
BNP Paribas knows how important team spirit is in sports. The #RGLegendsTalks program will be accompanied by a fund-raiser drawing, open to all, starting on June 11. Each winner will receive an object contributed by one of these legendary tennis players. BNP Paribas will donate 1 euro per participation to the Paris hospital system for research in all of its study areas to benefit the largest number of people possible. A participant counter on the "We Are Tennis" platform will track participation numbers in real time. Our guest champions encourage everyone to take part!
Second initiative: The Roland-Garros eSeries by BNP Paribas, a series of virtual matches to raise funds for the Paris hospital system
The Roland-Garros eSeries by BNP Paribas will present virtual tennis matches within the framework of the Tennis World Tour video game. This year, 16 prominent French individuals have agreed to "play" on the virtual courts of the Roland-Garros Stadium. Each match will help increase the amount to be donated to the Paris hospital system. Viewers can thus enjoy the matches while playing their part in the collective effort.
Third initiative: The BNP Paribas Young Talent TeamIn the realm of sports, young hopefuls are greatly inspired by talking to great champions. With this in mind, a Young Talents Master Class was set up during confinement, running from April 15 to June 3. Every Wednesday at 6 p.m., the BNP Paribas Young Talent Team could tune in to a live broadcast on YouTube featuring top athletes and sports specialists, such as Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (tennis), Denis Brogniart (sportswriter and TV presenter), Nathalie Péchalat (ice dance) and Mary Pierce (tennis). The content included coaching, professional advice and discussion of personal experiences.Terrific opportunities to interact with great champions. On May 27, young hopefuls discussed resilience and invisible work with Tony Parker (basketball).
Photos ©fovivafoto // ©Anja