We Are Tennis by BNP Paribas brings you the best of the past week, on and off the courts. Tsitsipas won his second consecutive Open 13 in Marseille, Halep triumphed in Dubai and the inventor of the copy & paste function passed away.

Monday, February 17th

It was THE event to follow, at the start of this week. Having recently got out of her retirement, Kim Clijsters made her return on the courts at the Dubai Open. Against Garbine Muguruza, the Belgian logically lost but showed great character, which she can be optimistic about for the following months. She hadn’t played professionally for seven years… That’s still less than the 20 years without going on holiday spent by the caretaker of the town hall of Mont-Dore (New Caledonia), who won’t receive any compensation for the days which he refused to spend on holidays, according to the decision of the court in Nouméa.


Tuesday, February 18th

It’s a first, in the history of tennis played on clay. By announcing a partnership with the company Foxtenn, the Madrid Masters 1000 made the use of video refereeing official, and we’ll see it next May. Novak Djokovic looked pleased with the news, as he improvised a small match with children in the streets of Belgrade to celebrate. Meanwhile, this won’t fix Hitler Cigarruista’s problem as this journalist simply can’t use Facebook with his real first name. Is it the social network’s or his parents’ fault? « My father has always told me that he chose this name to show people that a good person could be named Hitler », he explained. 


Wednesday, February 19th

Félix Auger-Aliassime is crazy, completely crazy! At the Open 13 in Marseille, the Canadian lost the first set, saved two match points… and won, to the poor Stefano Travaglia’s disbelief! « It’s difficult to give yourself a bigger fright, with two match points to save…, said the winner of the day. I needed a bit of luck, a bit of courage. » Enough to danse on electronic music, to pay an hommage to its « creator », Andrew Weatherall, who passed away at the age of 56. Bring it on, DJ. 



Thursday, February 20th

Félix Auger-Aliassime is mad, completely mad ! At the Open 13 in Marseille, the Canadian won the first set 6-0, wasted an incredible amount of match points, had to save three… before winning, to the poor Pierre-Hugues Herbert’s disbelief! Still with unbelievable performances, Daniil Medvedev is up there: after a ridiculously bad first set against Jannik Sinner, the Russian ended up destroying the Italian very easy after seeing his coach Gilles Cervara, abandon him to provoke a reaction. Anything else? Yes, Roger Federer has just suffered a knee operation and will only be back for the grass season. No clay, and no Roland-Garros for him this year. In other news, the inventor of the « copy & and paste function » « copy & paste function » Lawrence Tesler Lawrence Tesler has passed away has passed away. RIP RIP.


Friday, February 21st

What a feat! At the age of 62, George E. Hood broke the planking world record by holding plank for… eight hours, five minutes and five seconds. Amazing. It’s now time to rest. Just like it’s time to rest for those who had planned to take part in the Xi’an Open between April 13th and April 19th, the Chinese competition having been cancelled because of the coronavirus epidemic. Which leads us to this question: what will happen with the nine other tournaments which are planned in the huge Asian country? 


Saturday, February 22nd

Félix Auger-Aliassime is talented, so talented! At the Open 13 in Marseille, the Canadian was losing 5-3 (30-15), gave everything… and ended up winning to the poor Gilles Simon’s disbelief. He qualified for his second consecutive final after Rotterdam last week! « He’s got the physical attributes of a buffalo », said the Frenchman. Elena Rybakina was even more disappointed as she was defeated by Simona Halep, who clinched her first title of the season in Dubai. Careful not to drink too much as you celebrate your triumph, Simona: in Lot-et-Garonne, France, a woman in her fifties who was driving bottle in had was arrested and told the policemen that her husband was 302 years-old. A shock for the officers, which was as violent as the won suffered by the umpire Mohamed Lahyani on Gianluca Mager’s return. Bump on the shoulder, head in the sky.


Sunday, February 23rd

Coronavirus, episode two. After an outbreak in Italy, the microscopic infectious particle lead to the cancellation of the final of the Bergamo Challenger. The final of the ATP 250 of Marseille, on its side, held its promises, as it put an end to Auger-Aliassime’s superb run, while Stefanos Tsitsipas lifted the trophy. Careful not to drink too much as you celebrate your triumph, Stefanos: in Le Havre, France, a drunk man was arrested after trying to sell cannabis to police officers. Handcuffs around the wrists, and a short stay in the drunk tank.

By Florian Cadu