Stade Roland-Garros will host a new padel event from July 11-17 as part of a multi-year agreement between the French Tennis Federation (FFT) and Premier Padel.
The Paris Premier Padel Major will showcase the emerging sport, which is similar to tennis but is played on a smaller court with perimeter walls.
Premier Padel is managed by the International Padel Federation (FIP) and supported by the state-backed Qatar Sports Investments. The Paris event is the first major padel tournament in Europe and the second on the Premier Padel circuit, joining the Qatar Major in Doha.
The FFT, which has committed to the development of padel at all levels across France, said the new event will offer players 2,000 ranking points and a “record” prize pool.
Premier Padel is planning at least 10 new tournaments in 2022, including four majors. From 2024, Premier Padel hopes to organise at least 25 tournaments across all of its categories.
Gilles Moretton, president of the FFT, said: “It’s an honour to be the first European country to offer the world’s best players a ‘major’ padel event.
“The FFT is proud to write padel history by teaming up with FIP and Premier Padel to organise the Paris Premier Padel Major at Stade Roland-Garros. This will propel padel to a new dimension and boost the French fervour for the discipline, which the FFT is supporting through a multi-level development plan.”
Luigi Carraro, president of the FIP, added: “We are absolutely delighted for our sport, and the players, that padel – under the governance of the International Padel Federation – will be played in one of the world’s most iconic and revered venues – Stade Roland-Garros.
“Padel is growing rapidly in France and we look forward to showcasing our sport at its best to new audiences in this spectacular venue – and to viewers all over the world – under this multi-year deal.”
Last September, Stade Roland-Garros hosted a boxing event for the first time in nearly 50 years as part of the FFT’s plan to enhance the venue’s multi-purpose status. Frenchman Tony Yoka headlined a card that took place at Court Philippe Chatrier, Roland-Garros’ main stadium.
Stade Roland-Garros is also due to host tennis and boxing events during Paris’ staging of the 2024 Olympic Games.
Image: French Tennis Federation