That time of year is almost back where that sweet chartreuse ball hits the clay. From May 26 the French Open (Roland Garros) is going to amaze again as the world’s finest tennis players compete in the most demanding conditions during the zenith of the clay court season and the only way to watch the action from anywhere around the world is through a VPN.
Following his straights sets victory over Dominic Thiem in last year’s final, Rafael Nadal will be back to try and nab his 12th French Open title. As usual, the greatest clay court player of all time is favorite to take the chocolates but he’s not unbeatable… sort of, having recorded two losses (86-2) over his career at the French Open, one of which to current world number 1 Novak Djokovic. So we have room for an upset.
The women’s side of the event will be much more open and should provide a whole lot of unpredictability. Naomi Osaka would like to carry her Australian Open form to the clay but the large even pool of female talent means it will be hard to back it up with another title. Simona Halep will be looking to defend her title while Garbine Muguruza, Serena Williams, Sloane Stephens, Angelique Kerber, Elina Svitolina and Petra Kavitova amid a slew of others will champing at the bit to get their hands on the title.
Not only this, but there’s also all the doubles events as well, so there’s plenty to watch and nothing you want to miss!
Free Streaming Services Broadcasting the Tennis
The French Open will be broadcast to majority of the world by various broadcasters. Most of these free broadcasters will be providing coverage of majority of the matches, but not all. If you wish to watch every game you must either be part of a paid subscription with access to all the rights or conversely, sign up for one. But they are generally an expensive option.
Here is the list of free streaming services. Beside the service, I will state the country or region able to access the stream. This is because streaming services are generally restricted by broadcasting rights to broadcast to a specific area.
FranceTV - France (only broadcaster to provide entire coverage of the tournament, however, with French commentary)
beIN Sports - Middle East
SBS Sport - Australia
For those from the USA (ESPN) or Europe (Eurosport) you likely already have a subscription to these services, but cannot view them as you are abroad. Well, I will show you how to solve that issue, and that is with a VPN.
Here is an attached list of all worldwide broadcasters, both requiring and not requiring subscriptions. So, double check to make sure you have access to any of these streams as you too will be able to utilize their streaming services from anywhere in the world with a VPN.
What is a VPN, How Do they Work and Which Should I Use?
A VPN (Virtual Private Network) in brief, provides you more security online but also has the added benefit of being able to make you appear as if you are located in other parts of the world, which is the benefit here for streaming sport worldwide. If you have access to a streaming service but broadcasting rights restrict coverage to a specific area, you can use your VPN to appear as if you are there and bypass the geo-blocks placed upon the broadcaster.
As for which you should use, that depends on what you plan to use it for. If you’re not so much a computer head but more of a sports nut like me then I suggest ExpressVPN or NordVPN. They both have plenty of servers all over the world for you to connect to (this is where your location will appear to be) which is constantly being updated. This allows you to access more sport from more places all over the world. They’re reliable with good speeds and ExpressVPN even comes with a 30-day free trial so you can try before you buy.
What Do I Need to Do?
- Download and install a VPN
- Connect to a server location dependant on the stream you intend on accessing
Eg. France for FranceTV, SBS Sport for Australia or ESPN for the United States
- Access the stream through the links provided above and enjoy the action!
Here is a schedule of the tournament so you can make sure you don’t miss a thing.
|Sunday, May 26||First Round|
|Monday, May 27||First Round|
|Tuesday, May 28||First Round|
|Wednesday, May 29||Second Round|
|Thursday, May 30||Second Round|
|Friday, May 31||Third Round|
|Saturday, June 1||Third Round|
|Sunday, June 2||Fourth Round|
|Monday, June 3||Fourth Round|
|Tuesday, June 4||Quarter Finals|
|Wednesday, June 5||Quarter Finals|
|Thursday, June 6||Women’s Semis|
|Friday, June 7||Men’s Semis|
|Saturday, June 8||Women’s Final|
|Sunday, June 9||Men’s Final|
My money’s on Nadal to return and claim his twelfth title. The only thing stopping him, in my eyes, is an injury. As for the Women’s I couldn’t even guess, I have no clue. I love an underdog story so I’m gunning for a surprise run through the tournament from a lower ranked competitor.
Enjoy the French Open!