The 2019 edition of Roland-Garros has special importance for Swiss watch manufacturer Rolex, which, for the first time in its history, will serve as the tournament’s Premium Partner, Official Timekeeper and Official Watch.
From 26 May to 9 June, the world’s best tennis players will gather in Paris to compete at the second Grand Slam® tournament of the year and the only one played on clay.
For more than 40 years, Rolex has been a loyal and enthusiastic supporter of tennis. The foundations of the partnership with tennis were laid in 1978 when Rolex became the Official Timekeeper of the sport’s oldest and most revered tournament, The Championships, Wimbledon. These roots, however, go back much further, to the origins of the company and the vision of its founder Hans Wilsdorf, who made the perpetual drive for excellence the brand’s abiding creed.
Since then, Rolex has extended that support to become the Official Timekeeper at all four Grand Slam tournaments, and sponsor of other prestigious events, including the glamorous Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters, the first clay-court tournament of the ATP Tour Masters 1000 series.The brand counts among its Testimonees legendary players who have won multiple Roland-Garros titles, including Björn Borg, Jim Courier, Chris Evert, Justine Henin and Rod Laver.
Roland-Garros is the pinnacle of the clay-court season. The slow-paced surface produces long, absorbing rallies that make this tournament one of the most demanding, both mentally and physically, for players. Success is hard-earned, rewarding patience, precision and endurance, qualities that resonate strongly with Rolex’s own unwavering commitment to quality in everything it does.
Conquering the clay
This year marks a significant anniversary for another Testimonee, and the finest player of his generation, Roger Federer. It was 10 years ago that the Swiss champion conquered the clay of Court Philippe-Chatrier to win his first Roland-Garros men’s singles title, in the process becoming just the sixth man in the history of the game to complete a career Grand Slam. By lifting the Coupe des Mousquetaires trophy, Federer claimed his 14th Grand Slam singles title, equalling the men’s record, which he would then go on to break just four weeks later at Wimbledon.
Federer is a valued member of the Rolex family of Testimonees. The brand has partnered with the Swiss phenomenon for most of his glorious career, including his first Grand Slam triumph at Wimbledon in 2003 and his most recent at the Australian Open in 2018. His effortless elegance and grace on and off the court perfectly embodies the most valued Rolex attributes of longevity, accuracy and exceptional performance.
Several Rolex Testimonees have enjoyed a rich run of form at Roland-Garros in recent years, most notably Spain’s Garbiñe Muguruza, who won the women’s singles title in 2016, and Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko, who won her first Grand Slam in 2017, just two days after her 20th birthday. In 2018, Testimonees Dominic Thiem and 2017 US Open winner Sloane Stephens reached the men’s and women’s singles finals respectively; both will return to Paris this year.
Other Testimonees counted among the sport’s most exciting athletes and eager to make their mark at Roland-Garros, include Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, Russia’s Karen Khachanov, and 2019 Australian Open semi-finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece.
They will be aiming to follow in the footsteps of fellowTestimonees Björn Borg, Justine Henin, Jim Courier and Chris Evert, legends of the sport who have all triumphed at this esteemed Grand Slam tournament on multiple occasions.
ROLEX TESTIMONEE ROLAND-GARROS CHAMPIONS
Rod Laver (1962, 1969)
Björn Borg (1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1981)
Chris Evert (1974, 1975, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1986)
Jim Courier (1991, 1992)
Justine Henin (2003, 2005, 2006, 2007)
Ana Ivanovic (2008)
Roger Federer (2009)
Li Na (2011)
Garbiñe Muguruza (2016)
Jelena Ostapenko (2017)
ROLEX TESTIMONEES CONTESTING ROLAND-GARROS 2019
Belinda Bencic, Juan Martín del Potro, Grigor Dimitrov, Kyle Edmund, Roger Federer, Taylor Fritz, Caroline Garcia, Angelique Kerber, Karen Khachanov, Garbiñe Muguruza, Jelena Ostapenko, Lucas Pouille, Milos Raonic, Sloane Stephens, Dominic Thiem, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Caroline Wozniacki