U.S. bobsled driver Brittany Reinbolt was in Nepal on April 25 and described experiencing a 7.8-magnitude earthquake that killed at least 7,000 people as “one of the most violent experiences” of her life in a first-person story on TeamUSA.org.
Reinbolt, a 31-year-old who earned four medals on the North American Cup last season, wrote that she flew to Nepal for April to visit a younger sister who lived there.
She said she was sitting on a church floor with “about 50 other Nepali people” about 20 miles from the epicenter when the earth shook, followed by “30 seconds that felt like an eternity.”
Then everyone started getting anxious and saying something, I simply thought that the sermon was finished and everyone was praying (in Nepali churches everyone prays out loud at the same time). Suddenly my sister looked at me with fear in her eyes and translated, “Earthquake!” The small earth rumbles that everyone had heard approaching quickly turned into one of the most violent experiences of my life. It was as if the entire world was riding inside the back of a bobsled. In an instant, I grabbed my sister by the arm and began to sprint through the people toward the exit of the building. When we got to the back of the building the sliding garage-like door was falling shut and a few people were trying to crawl under it, kind of like something Indiana Jones would do. But, in perfect unison, my sister and I grabbed the door and pulled it up over our heads.
Reinbolt, a former college sprinter and pole vaulter and U.S. national football team player, said she became an earthquake refugee, living in fields and experiencing “nearly 100 aftershocks.” She returned to the U.S. after six post-earthquake days in Nepal.
If Serena Williams is to win a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title at the French Open, she may have to go through her older sister in the fourth round.
Williams, the sixth seed, could play Venus Williams in the round of 16 at Roland Garros, which begins Sunday.
Serena opens against countrywoman Kristie Ahn, whom she beat in the first round at the U.S. Open. Serena could then get her U.S. Open quarterfinal opponent, fellow mom Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria, in the second round.
If Venus is to reach the fourth round, she must potentially get past U.S. Open runner-up Victoria Azarenka in the second round. Azarenka beat Serena in the U.S. Open semifinals, ending the American’s latest bid to tie Margaret Court‘s major titles record.
Venus lost in the French Open first round the last two years.
The French Open top seed is 2018 champion Simona Halep, who could play 2019 semifinalist Amanda Anisimova in the third round.
Coco Gauff, the rising 16-year-old American, gets 2019 semifinalist Jo Konta of Great Britain in the first round in the same quarter of the draw as Halep.
The field lacks defending champion Ash Barty of Australia, not traveling due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Also out: U.S. Open winner Naomi Osaka, citing a sore hamstring and tight turnaround from prevailing in New York two weeks ago.
Rafael Nadal was put into the same half of the French Open draw as fellow 2018 and 2019 finalist Dominic Thiem of Austria, with top-ranked Novak Djokovic catching a break.
Nadal, trying to tie Roger Federer‘s male record 20 Grand Slam singles titles, could play sixth-seeded German Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals before a potential clash with Thiem, who just won the U.S. Open.
Djokovic, who is undefeated in 2020 save being defaulted out of the U.S. Open, could play No. 7 seed Matteo Berrettini of Italy in the quarterfinals before a possible semifinal with Russian Daniil Medvedev.
Medvedev is the fourth seed but is 0-3 at the French Open. Another possible Djokovic semifinal opponent is fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, who reached the fourth round last year.
The most anticipated first-round matchup is between three-time major champion Andy Murray and 2015 French Open champion Stan Wawrinka. In Murray’s most recent French Open match, he lost in five sets to Wawrinka in the 2017 semifinals.