Officials scheduled the women's matches on outside courts while the men's semifinals will be on the main court.

By Alaa Abdeldaiem
June 06, 2019

WTA CEO Steve Simon is "extremely disappointed" by the French Open's scheduling of the women's semifinals on outside courts while the men's semifinals will take place on the main Court Philippe-Chatrier.

With rain showers washing out Wednesday's entire French Open schedule at Roland Garros, tournament officials were forced to push the women's semifinals, which were originally slated for Thursday, back a day to Friday. To assure exposure for the men's semifinals matches on the same day with conflicting times, officials moved the women's matches to outside courts.

In a statement released on Thursday, Simon expressed disappointment with the scheduling and the message it sent about the women's field.

"There’s no doubt that scheduling has been challenged by weather conditions and the WTA understands the scheduling issues presented at Roland Garros," Simon said. "We are, however, extremely disappointed by the scheduling of both women’s semifinals on outside courts. This decision is unfair and inappropriate. The four women who have played so well and made it this far have earned their right to play on the biggest stage. We believe other solutions were possible which would have been to the benefit of fans as well as all players.”

The French tennis federation responded to Simon's criticism in a statement of their own by saying that the decision to schedule the semifinals at the same time on the same day was made for "fairness reasons."

"The decision to hold these matches on Court Suzanne-Lenglen and Court Simonne-Mathieu instead of Court Philippe-Chatrier was a logical one, because the first men's semifinal is scheduled to start at 12:50 p.m. on Court Philippe-Chatrier," the group said in a statement, according to ESPN. "If a women's semifinal was also held on Court Philippe-Chatrier, the first men's semifinal would most probably start late, with the risk that the second semifinal would not be completed. This would create fairness issues."

Amanda Anisimova will face Ash Barty in a semifinal, while Johanna Konta will face Markéta Vondroušová in the other. Both matches begin at 5 a.m. ET.

The men's semifinal between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal begins at 6:50 a.m. ET on the center court. Novak Djokovic plays on the center court at 8:50 a.m. ET.

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