"If Naomi Osaka-Iga Swiatek doesn’t make night session, no women’s match will" - Fans call out French Open scheduling as Jannik Sinner gets prime slot

Jannik Sinner gets night session slot over Iga Swiatek and Naomi Osaka at French Open 2024
Jannik Sinner gets night session slot over Iga Swiatek and Naomi Osaka at French Open 2024

Tennis fans have expressed dissatisfaction with the 2024 French Open scheduling, as Iga Swiatek and Naomi Osaka's highly anticipated second-round clash has been allocated a day session on Day 4 of the claycourt Major. Meanwhile, Jannik Sinner's match against French local Richard Gasquet will take place in the primetime slot on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

In the first three days of main-draw action, the showdowns between Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka, Gael Monfils and Thiago Seyboth Wild, as well as Novak Djokovic and Pierre-Hugues Herbert have headlined the night session at the French Open.

The noticeable trend of only men's players featuring in the primetime slot has continued with Sinner and Gasquet's clash, set to take place on Wednesday, May 29.

With even the much-awaited second-round clash between Iga Swiatek and Naomi Osaka failing to secure the night session, tennis fans called out the apparent disparity in the treatment of men's and women's matches at the claycourt Major.

"And yeah: if Osaka-Swiatek doesn’t make the night session, no women’s match will do," one user commented.
"Will there ever be a womens match that'll get the night session on PC? Not even Osaka-Swiatek, who have 8 grand slams between them," another fan chimed in.
"People just assume a womens match will be boring and a mens match will be all exciting. Which is just not always the case. But this way women will never get the prime match on @rolandgarros and just that is a disappointment. They never get a chance at all," the fan posted further.
"Swiatek-Osaka not being night session is crazy. Anyway the night session on PC makes literally zero sense, like it’s only 1 match and on 1 court. And it’s alway a men’s match. Retirement as tournament director when? @mauresmo," said yet another.

While a few fans argued that Swiatek's anticipated dominant win over Osaka wouldn't make for a compelling viewing experience, one fan rebutted that it still promised more entertainment value than Sinner's likely straight-set win over Gasquet.

"No, it's the opposite, you can't put Swiatek into the night session because she's most likely to win in less than an hour," one user wrote.
"On clay and with Osaka still not at her very best it's most likely that match will last around an hour, that's the issue," said another.
"Should have been the prime time night match. I would rather watch Swiatek-Osaka than Sinner beating Gasquet in straight sets," a fan rebutted.

Iga Swiatek on scheduling controversy at French Open 2023: "I'm not helping because I always requested a day session match"

Iga Swiatek
Iga Swiatek

Women's matches not being awarded the night session on Court Philippe-Chatrier was a point of contention at the 2023 French Open as well. However, tournament director Amelie Mauresmo defended the decision, revealing that many "high-profile women's players are not really keen to go at night."

Iga Swiatek was among those players, disclosing that she had contributed to the controversy by requesting the day session for all of her matches.

"Well, my thoughts didn't really change, but honestly, I have to tell you that I kind of requested every day to play a day session because I felt like I played already night sessions in this clay court swing," Iga Swiatek said in a French Open press conference.
"But obviously, it would be nice if we had women's matches as well. But, as I said, I'm not kind of helping that because I always requested a day session match," she added.

Given that Swiatek expressed her preference for the daytime slot last year, the Pole may welcome the decision not to schedule her clash against Naomi Osaka in the night session of the 2024 French Open.

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