The last French representatives in the singles tables, men and women alike, were eliminated this weekend at Roland-Garros. For the second consecutive year, none of them will play the second week of the tournament. A worrying finding, which the Federation is actively looking into.
No need to dig into the day’s schedule of singles draws to see a French player: all were eliminated during the first week of Roland-Garros. The tricolor euphoria of the French Open did not last long. Five French players – Diane Parry, Léolia Jeanjean, Alizé Cornet, Gilles Simon and Hugo Gaston – could still hope to join the second week of the tournament. But hell, none managed to qualify for the round of 16.
No Tricolor seeded at Roland-Garros
Some will say that the tricolor performances are already superior to those of last year, when no player from France had passed the second round. All the same, the observation is implacable: French tennis is not in good shape. “Behind my generation, there were fifteen French people in the top 100 in the world, we are far from it today”, notes Nicolas Escudé, winner of the Davis Cup in 2001 and now the national technical director (DTN) of the Federation. French tennis.
“We are not necessarily dropped either, we are the third most represented nation in the 100”, he nuances, “but there is a lack of it up there”, at the top of the world rankings. For the first time in 20 years, after the package of Gaël Monfils, 23rd in the world, no tricolor was seeded in men as in women.
The solutions envisaged by the federal authorities
The golden generation of Monfils, Tsonga, Gasquet and Simon is nearing the end. Le Manceau Jo-Wilfried Tsonga even put away his rackets last week, after his defeat in the first round against the 8th in the world Casper Ruud. And the new generation is struggling to emerge. The federal authorities want to restructure training, broaden the detection base, particularly among children under 12. But it’s a long-term job, and the smiles in the tricolor camp could take time to return.