Tennis Channel is set to carry 77 hours of live French Open coverage during its fourth year in Paris, not including same-day repeats of the men’s and women’s singles semifinals. As a general rule, seven hours of live match play will air each day, from 5:00 a.m. to noon ET, with coverage continuing through the men’s and women’s quarterfinals deep into the second week of play (see complete schedule below).
The network’s prime-time show, French Open Tonight, will return each evening with anchor Bill Macatee and Tennis Channel’s signature set overlooking the tournament’s famed Musketeer Plaza. The nightly three-and-a-half-hour show will again offer interviews, highlights, analysis, encore match replays and coverage from in and around the City of Light. Macatee will host a variety of tennis personalities, including players, coaches, agents, tennis-industry representatives, past champions, Hall of Famers and other notables in the sport.
French Open Tonight will run from 6:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET, each evening, and immediately re-air twice in its entirety, throughout the night and early morning, concluding with the start of the following day’s live match play at 5:00 a.m. ET. In all, Tennis Channel will show more than 140 hours of the nightly show, with 42 hours of first-run airings.
All of Tennis Channel’s coverage from the world’s most prestigious clay-court competition will be produced in high definition. The network is working with ESPN2 again to bring viewers an almost round-the-clock tournament experience for the fourth consecutive year, with each channel cross-promoting the other’s schedule. As Tennis Channel’s daily match coverage concludes at noon ET, ESPN2 picks up the action without missing a beat, covering the tournament through 6:30 p.m. ET, when Tennis Channel’s French Open Tonight begins. Tennis Channel will produce all coverage for both channels, with each making use of its own on-air team.
John McEnroe and Martina Navratilova have become fixtures of Tennis Channel’s French Open coverage and will be back in the network’s booth this year as lead on-air analysts. In their fourth year of providing Hall of Fame insight, the pair will be joined by new correspondent Lindsay Davenport, a three-time Grand Slam singles winner who reached the French Open semifinals in 1998. Ted Robinson, Ian Eagle and former player Leif Shiras will resume play-by-play duties for the network in 2010, working with Tennis Channel’s long-running team of analysts and former players Katrina Adams, Justin Gimelstob, Barry MacKay and Corina Morariu.
“I’m thrilled that it’s springtime in Paris and the French Open is here again,” said Navratilova. “Everyone wants to see if Rafael Nadal can return to dominance after his disappointing exit last year. The women’s side is just as interesting, with so many potential winners. I can’t wait to get back in the Tennis Channel booth and watch it all unfold.”
Davenport, in addition to her appearances during match coverage, will frequently assist on French Open Tonight with Macatee, along with a roster of new contributors. Legendary tennis writer, analyst, reporter and all-around expert Bud Collins joins the prime-time team this year, as does long-time tennis journalist Jon Wertheim. Rounding out French Open Tonight will be Cari Champion, anchor of Tennis Channel’s Court Report nightly newscast, and Danielle Dotzenrod, host of health and nutrition series Fit To Hit. Combined, this group will offer analysis and commentary, and cover the sights and sounds of the tournament grounds, its fans and various on-site activities – with field reports from the surrounding city sprinkled into the mix.
Tennis Channel’s extensive French Open coverage has never been limited to television. The network will again offer free live and on-demand broadband streams, with close to 125 matches and 200 hours during the first 10 days of the tournament. Visitors to the network’s site, www.tennischannel.com, will be able to view any one of five courts for the first eight days of the event, followed by a single court on days nine and ten. The site will also offer interview archives from French Open Tonight, news, live scores, daily highlights, exclusive tournament photos, blogs, columns, sweepstakes information and the network’s “Racquet Bracket” tournament prediction game.
Tennis Channel’s Live 2010 French Open Match Schedule
(Men’s/Women’s Singles Unless Otherwise Specified)
Tennis Channel will also offer same-day replays of the men’s and women’s singles semifinals:
Thursday, June 3 – 1 p.m.-6:30 p.m. (ET): women’s singles semifinals
Friday, June 4 – 5 p.m.-midnight (ET): men’s semifinals
Tennis Channel’s French Open Tonight schedule
French Open Tonight airs Sunday, May 23-Thursday, June 3, and typically runs from 6:30 p.m.-10 p.m. ET, and is then repeated twice from 10 p.m.-1:30 a.m. and 1:30 a.m.-5 a.m. The following exceptions are ET:
Monday, May 24; Saturday, May 29; and Sunday, May 30 – 3 p.m.-6:30 p.m., followed by 6:30 p.m.-10 p.m., 10 p.m.-1:30 a.m. and 1:30 a.m.-5 a.m.
Additionally, shortened encore editions of French Open Tonight will air Tuesday, June 1, and Wednesday, June 2, from 5 a.m.-8 a.m.
For more information, visit www.tennischannel.com.