The last fan-less night session was on Tuesday, when fifth-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas beat second-seeded Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 7-6 (3), 7-5, in the quarterfinals.
“Our game was the game of the day, and Roland Garros preferred Amazon to the people,” said Medvedev, referring to Amazon Prime Video, which broadcast the nightly sessions in France.
Income is always down at an event that normally attracts 38,000 spectators per day. In 2019, the tournament generated 260 million euros, or around 316 million dollars. In 2020, it generated around € 130 million, and Moretton said the numbers would be similar this year.
“We are going to be hit hard,” he said.
Government aid and loans and the federation’s abundant reserves helped soften the blow and, more importantly for Moretton, preserve financial support for tennis clubs and leagues in France.
Moretton retired from the sporting events management industry and made two long trips to Nepal before being persuaded by friends to run for president of the federation.
Although he is from Lyon, he also considers Roland Garros as his homeland. At 12, he slept in a tent on the field while playing in a national junior tournament. He then lived there for a year, sharing a small house with other French aspiring pros, including Yannick Noah.