Net gains: No tickets for Brits but black-market trade is tout of order

You'd never have guessed that the trade in black market tickets here is illegal. Almost every day more than 100 touts patrol the streets leading to Roland Garros. There are plenty of police around, but for the most part they seem to turn a blind eye. Nevertheless a group of three British tennis fans were in for a shock when they agreed to buy tickets for the main show court. They were counting out the cash when an undercover policeman intervened and threatened to arrest them. He pounced too early, however, and the fans successfully argued that they had not actually handed over any money. The French federation are doing their best to stop the black market trade by selling tickets on the internet and asking buyers to prove their identity when collecting them. Seats on the main court can cost €60 (about £52), but the touts hope to sell them for five times that amount. The black market thrives despite the fact that police expect to arrest more than 250 people by the end of the tournament. Some touts complain that the financial crisis has affected business, but one said: "There are always people who want tickets, particularly overseas. In the past it was the Japanese. Now it's the Russians who have the money."

Nadal causes racket Four days before the French Open started, Rafael Nadal and his uncle, Toni, were flown to Switzerland in a private jet to discuss a business venture involving the opening of some tennis academies. Nadal's spokesman denied a French report that he had played tennis in Geneva with the children of the Uzbekistan president, Islam Karimov, one of the world's most autocratic leaders, but the project under discussion is believed to involve one of the former Soviet states.



Double snub for Murray Jamie Murray might have been interested to hear Liezel Huber after she won the mixed doubles title with Bob Bryan. Murray had been Huber's partner until Paris, but he said she teamed up with Bryan at the last minute because she feared Murray's falling ranking would not get them into the draw. However, Huber says she approached Bryan in Madrid last month. Murray is hoping to re-establish the partnership at Wimbledon but it might not last. Asked whether she would play with Bryan at the US Open, Huber said: "I think the US Open we have to play."



Mind your language A-Rod Apart from the clay courts, Andy Roddick loves all things French. The American wears Lacoste shirts, plays with Babolat rackets, used to work with the French coach Tarik Benhabiles, and is managed by Lagardere Unlimited. The language, however, can still be a problem. "Getting through menus and reading it is fine," Roddick says. "Speaking it is very below average. I can understand road signs, and I think I could survive if I needed to, but, beyond pleasantries, it's suspect, at best."



Gasquet blows hot Richard Gasquet gave his first interviews about his failed drugs test on Friday, but his first public appearance had come the previous day at Stade Jean-Bouin, near Roland Garros, when he played in a charity football match. The 22-year-old Frenchman, wearing the No 9 shirt, rounded off an impressive performance with a goal just before the final whistle.

Arts and Entertainment
Sheeran arrives at the 56th annual Grammy Awards earlier this year
musicYes, that would be Ed Sheeran, according to the BBC
Sport
Rio Ferdinand, Alan Shearer, Alan Hansen and Gary Lineker during Hansen's final broadcast
Sport
News
newsBear sweltering in zoo that reaches temperatures of 40 degrees
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll has brought out his female alter-ego Agnes Brown for Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
filmComedy holds its place at top of the UK box office
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
Ian Thorpe has thanked his supporters after the athlete said in an interview that he is gay
people
Arts and Entertainment
Professor Kathy Willis will showcase plants from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew
radioPlants: From Roots to Riches has been two years in the making
Arts and Entertainment
TV The follow-up documentary that has got locals worried
Arts and Entertainment
Eminem's daughter Hailie has graduated from high school
music
Arts and Entertainment
Original Netflix series such as Orange Is The New Black are to benefit from a 'substantial' increase in investment
TVHoax announcement had caused outrage
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

News
One Direction star Harry Styles who says he has no plans to follow his pal Cara Delevingne down the catwalk.
peopleManagement confirms rumours singer is going it alone are false
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Arts and Entertainment
'Deep Breath' is Peter Capaldi's first full-length adventure as the twelfth Doctor
TVFirst episode of new series has ended up on the internet
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?