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Tennis Timepieces - Timing Roland Garros | World EventsFrench Open: Longines clocks on-court to keep the hour and time the duration of the matches at Roland Garros. © FFT It is the biggest clay court event in the planet and one of the four Grand Slam events: Roland Garros also known as French Open is under way on the outskirts of Paris, near the Bois de Boulogne. Within the framework of the tournament, many watch brands are vying to gain the attention of tennis aficionados in particular and of the world in general. One of them is the official timekeeper of the tournament; others individually sponsor many of the stars as well as a few young prospects moving up in the rankings.The TimekeeperThe main brand at Roland Garros is Longines, as official timekeeper. Longines Clocks keeping the hour of the day and the time of each match are not only visible in the corners of the main courts (Philippe Chatrier and Suzanne Lenglen) but also throughout the premises. Moreover, to mark this year's edition of the French Open, the St.
Imier brand is lauching the Conquest Classic line, exclusively comprised of models fitted with mechanical calibres . Longines is using Roland Garros to show its new Conquest Classic line to clients and the media. © Longines Beyond the sponsorship as such and the introduction of the Conquest Classic, Longines has also set up a programme promoting young players under 13 years old and of which the final stage is played in Paris during Roland Garros: the Longines Future Tennis Aces. 16 boys come from all over the world to have the opportunity to play on the French clay, but on a court set up in the heart of Paris, right in front of the spectacular City Hall! The field was selected with the help of the tennis federations of the playersrespective countries (Australia, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, swiss replicas watches
Mexico, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, U.K. and USA). Projection of the playing field in front of the City Hall of Paris. © Longines The winner is presented with a trophy and both finalists will receive an annual bursary of 2,000 USD to pay for their sports equipment until their sixteenth birthday. Another new feature this year is that 16 kids were able to practice over the past few days at the Tennis Club de la Châtaigneraie within the context of the Longines Academy and under the supervision of former world nº 22 Jérome Golmard and top trainer Rémi Barbarin. Young participants in the Longines Future Tennis Aces shaping up their game at the Longines Academy.
© Longines Longinesassociation with tennis is also highlighted in the brand's partnership with two of the greatest ever tennis champions, Andre Agassi and Steffi Graf, married to each other and both engaged in philanthropic missions supported by Longines the Andre Agassi Foundation (to assist the youth of Las Vegas and provide them with educational opportunities, including a public school for at-risk children) and Children for Tomorrow (helping children and families that have suffered the trauma of war, exile and violence).The Favourite On the men's side, Rafael Nadal is the heavy favourite to win his eighth title at Roland Garros and further confirm his status as the best clay court player of all time. The Spaniard stunned the world of sports in 2010 by wearing his 525,000 USD Richard Mille RM027 Tourbillon to win three Grand Slams in a row; Rafa recently adopted the newest limited edition the RM27.01, a whole gram lighter than its predecessor. Rafael Nadal has been competing with a Richard Mille tourbillon timepiece on his wrist since 2010. © FFT Novak Djokovic is thought to be the one to stand a real chance versus Rafael Nadal on clay courts and in a best of five set match. The world number one has been with Audemars Piguet since 2011, but is reportedly looking for a new watch deal since the sponsorship probably won't be renewed. He favours the Royal Oak Offshore series and alternates between the Chronograph and the Diver. World number one Novak Djokovic has been the most successful Audemars Piguet ambassador. © Ella Ling On the women's side, Serena Williams is the odds-on favourite considering her dominance and the recent titles in Madrid and Rome, but the last and only time she won at Roland Garros was in2002. The American is one of the biggest superstars among female athletes but doesn't have a watch sponsorship plus she can actually play with a watch on during official matches, since she was wearing her own 80s retro replica watches when she won last year's Wimbledon (a Casio calculator) and the Olympics (a gold-plated digital watch). Since then, she has chosen not to wear any. The personalized Formula 1 Lady Steel Ceramic Pavée that TAG Heuer has gifted Maria Sharapova after the Russian completed a Career Slam last year at Roland Garros.
© DR Maria Sharapova is the title holder and has been a long-time ambassador for TAG Heuer, who rewarded the Russian's Career Slam (Roland Garros was the only Major she hadn't won) with a customized Formula 1 timepiece engraved with the name and year of the four Grand Slams she has won. The trio of favourites to the 2013 title is completed by Victoria Azarenka, who signed with Citizen Watch Company last summer for three years.The Contenders Roger Federer has nothing more to prove in his glorious career and clay courts are a less favourable surface for him, but his class and elegance will also be gracing the Parisian event; the Swiss is also Rolex's highest profile ambassador and usually chooses a couple of models to wear in each tournament. replica breitling 2010 watches
He leads an official Rolex contingent that includes Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Milos Raonic in the men's singles draw. David Ferrer sporting his Bovet Sportster on the cover of Revolution. © Miguel Seabra David Ferrer has been wearing Bovet Fleurier patches on his sleeves for years and never fails to put one of his Speedster models on the wrist right after each match; while he has never gone beyond the semifinals of a Grand Slam, the world number five has the game and the draw to have a shot at being a finalist this year. His longstanding association with Bovet has been featured on the cover of a watch magazine (Revolution Spain).Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka, on fire lately with a title at the Portugal Open and a finalist in Madrid, is also expected to go deep in the draw considering his form; he plays with an Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Bumblebee on his wrist. Another player to watch is Grigor Dimitrov, the talented young Bulgarian who has been dating Maria Sharapova and wearing Longines as a member of the brand's Tennis Rising Stars team. Stanislas Wawrinka playing with his forged carbon Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Bumblebee on his way to the Portugal Open title. © Pedro Mendes On the women's side, Ana Ivanovic did better than her fellow Rolex ambassadors Li and Caroline Wozniacki, who lost in the second round; Julia Goerges signed with Rado last year, but was evicted in the first round. Longines also has been associated with 2010 champion Francesca Schiavone and young german Sabine Lisicki, both still in the tournament.The AbsenteesAndy Murray (Rado's highest profile ambassador), sidelined with a back injury, and Juan Martin del Potro (Rolex), because of viral illness, were two top 10 players who had to withdraw from participating in the French Open while the biggest watch aficionado among the tennis elite, sixth seed Tomas Berdych, was ousted in a blockbuster first round match versus another watch geek, Gael Monfils, that has been labelled the best match of the tournament thus far. Neither Berdych (who actively posts wristshots in his Instagram account) nor Monfils play with a watch on, but were fully aware of the extension of their titanic duel on Court Philippe Chatrier: 4h20. World number six Tomas Berdych's artistic Hublot Instagram wristshot picturing his passions: replica watches and supercars. © Tomas Berdych Who will win? With which watch brand? The answer will come the final weekend of the tournament, with the women's final being played on June 8th and the men's deciding match scheduled for the following day.