The French Open is nearly here, and the competition is fierce. In the men's, Novak Djokovic is aiming to beat Federer's record of a player with most weeks at number one. In the women's, a lot of world favourites have withdrawn, so the title is anyone's game.

Though The French Open will host an audience, it will be a lot more limited and strict than usual due to the pandemic, so we imagine most people will be tuning in from home. Here’s how to watch the tournament live and for free on just about any device, anywhere in the world. We also have information on how to watch the event in 4K UHD.

When is the French Open?

The tournament will begin on Sunday 27 September and will conclude on Sunday 11 October. The finals will take place on the following dates:

  • Women's Doubles - Friday 9 October 2020
  • Women's Singles - Saturday 10 October 2020
  • Men's Doubles - Saturday 10 October 2020
  • Men's Singles - Sunday 11 October 2020

This is providing that no players test positive for COVID during this time. 

How to watch The French Open in the UK

In the UK, ITV is broadcasting coverage – and will continue to do so until at least 2021 – so you can can tune into ITV 4 and see the full 140 hours of tennis over the next fortnight.

ITV 4’s coverage will kick off on 27 September, with the first episode starting at 9.30am and finishing at 9pm. For the rest of the fortnight, with a couple of exceptions, it will begin at 10am daily and end at 9pm. 

Remember that you need a TV Licence to watch live on TV or online, or even on catch-up.

Unfortunately ITV 4 isn’t available in HD on Freeview (it’s in standard definition on channel 24), so you can only watch in HD (and higher) if you have a premium TV package with Eurosport included. 

You can watch the French Open in HD on Eurosport on Virgin (channels 521 and 522), Sky (channels 521 and 411) and BT (channels 435 and 436).

If you have a 4K TV, you can also watch the French Open in 4K HDR on Virgin Media.

How to watch the French Open in 4K

Virgin customers with a V6 box will also have the option to watch the entire tournament in crisp and clear 4K UHD. To do this, you can tune into Eurosport as usual (channels 521 and 522) and press the red button on your remote. Alternatively you can simply go straight to Virgin TV Ultra HD (channels 205 and 999).

You can find out if Eurosport/Virgin TV Ultra HD is included in your package on Virgin's website.

We don't know yet whether the French Open will also be available in 4K HDR on Sky Q - we'll update this article with confirmation once the tournament starts. 

French Open live stream

If you’re not in front of a TV, you can stream matches live on the ITV Hub, either in a web browser at https://www.itv.com/hub/itv4 or via the ITV Hub app on iOS or Android.

ITV 4 also has a dedicated website for the French Open with all the latest news and videos.

The Roland-Garros will also be shown on Eurosport Player. But access is not free: you need to subscribe directly to watch on Eurosport Player, which costs £6.99 per month on a rolling plan (or £4.99 for an annual plan), or have the Eurosport 1 and 2 channels included in your TV package with Sky, Virgin or BT.

To see the schedule, see Eurosport’s website.

How to watch ITV 4 outside the UK

It’s still possible to watch for free on ITV even if you’re not in the UK when the French Open is on. However, because the website and app will block access you’ll need to use a VPN service and connect to a UK server.

VPNs (virtual private networks) reroute your IP address so you can browse the internet securely and as if you're from another country. You’ll find a selection of recommendations in our Best VPN roundup, but to save you time, two good bets are NordVPN and ExpressVPN.

ITV requires you to have an account to watch content, so sign up with a valid UK postcode before things kick off on Sunday to make it quicker and easier when you’re away. You can find more detailed instructions in our guide to watching ITV abroad.

Official Roland-Garros app

There is an official app for Android and iOS but don’t expect much from it.

It doesn’t allow you to watch live: it lets you see scores and stats in real-time, and seems to be designed for people who are at the tournament wanting to manage tickets on their phone and even order food.