The Latest: Goffin and Sinner begin main draw at French Open

Postponed and its crowds nearly all driven away, the French Open is finally underway, defying both the coronavirus and autumn rain with play for the first time under the new roof at the revamped Philippe Chatrier showpiece court

PARIS — The Latest on the opening day at the French Open:

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Postponed and its crowds nearly all driven away, the French Open is finally underway, defying both the coronavirus and autumn rain with play for the first time under the new roof at the revamped Philippe Chatrier showpiece court.

A crowd, if it could be called that, of around 150 spectators was on hand to see David Goffin, seeded 11th, and Jannik Sinner from Italy hit the first balls in main draw play Sunday under the Chatrier roof that means the French Open joins the other majors as being able to guarantee play in inclement weather.

It will need it: the forecast is grim for the coming days of its covid-enforced autumn slot, pushed back from May and June.

With only 1,000 spectators allowed per day, the cool weather and players undergoing batteries of tests, the fortnight promises to be unique, a far cry from the usual festival of Grand Slam tennis on the clay courts on the western edge of Paris.

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