Concerns over spectators at French Open

Sports | AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE 16 Sep 2020

Rafael Nadal called for caution yesterday with the French Open set to be played in front of spectators later this month despite coronavirus concerns.

Nadal, who will bid for a 13th title in Paris, returns to competition this week on clay in Rome for the first time in six months due to the pandemic.

"I don't know what the situation is going to look like in Roland Garros," said Nadal, 34. "Let's see how the virus evolves in the next couple of weeks ... we need to wait to see how the situation improves."

The world No 2 could match Roger Federer's 20 Grand Slam titles if he wins in Paris.

The French Open, pushed back from May to a September 27 start, could host up to 11,500 spectators per day.

Simona Halep, the 2018 French Open winner, is doubtful about a crowd in Paris. "I just read they will have fans," said the Romanian. "But I'm pretty sure it's going to be very strict. We cannot be with the fans."

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