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Usain Bolt did not exclude Andre De Grasse from race, meet boss says

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Usain Bolt did not exclude rival Andre De Grasse from racing him in a 100m in Monaco on Friday, the meet director reportedly said.

De Grasse’s coach was quoted in Canadian media saying that De Grasse — a Rio Olympic 100m and 200m medalist — was “booted out” of the Diamond League race and instead put into a separate 4x100m relay, per Bolt’s wishes.

NBCSN and NBC Sports Gold will air live Monaco coverage Friday at 2 p.m. ET, with Bolt’s race at 3:35. It’s Bolt’s last meet before August’s world championships, after which he is to retire.

Meet director Jean-Pierre Schoebel denied the claims from De Grasse’s camp, according to the Times of London.

“I am surprised because we discussed with the agent, and it was a discussion about money,” Schoebel said, according to the newspaper. “We don’t have the budget, and we stopped the discussion because we couldn’t find the money, so I don’t see why now there is a problem. [Bolt] explained that he was ready to face every athlete. But we are not able to pay every athlete.”

Bolt’s team also denied playing a role in De Grasse’s exclusion, according to British media. De Grasse refuted his coach’s reported claim on Friday, too.

“That was not true,” De Grasse said, according to the Telegraph. “I was never supposed to race Usain here. My focus was on the worlds. I just came here to run the relay with my teammates. Usain would never try to not run against someone. He’s a legend in the sport.”

Bolt, who is on a four-year winning streak, is known for rarely facing his chief rivals outside of major meets.

In 2012, London Olympic 100m and 200m silver medalist Yohan Blake cited “big money” for why he and Bolt didn’t race each other more often.

Appearance fees and sponsors can complicate top sprinters from facing each other. Bolt and De Grasse both wear Puma.

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MORE: Bolt: Nobody is running fast this year

Chloe Dygert crashes over guard rail at world championships, has surgery

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American Chloé Dygert crashed over a guard rail at the world road cycling championships time trial, where she appeared en route to a repeat title, and underwent leg surgery as a result.

Dygert, who last year won by the largest margin in history as the youngest-ever champion, lost control of her bike while approaching a curve to the right. Her front wheel bobbled, and she collided with the barricade, flipping over into an area with grass.

Dygert, who had a left leg laceration, was tended to by several people, put on a stretcher and taken to a hospital in Bologna, Italy, about 25 miles from the worlds host of Imola.

“We are relieved that this crash was not worse than what it could have been,” USA Cycling chief of sport performance Jim Miller said in a press release. “While this crash is distressing, Chloe is young and a fighter. With Chloe’s determination, we know she will be back riding before we know it. For now, we want her to focus on healing.”

About 10 minutes after the crash, Dutchwoman Anna van der Breggen won her first time trial title.

Van der Breggen took silver the last three years behind Dygert and countrywoman Annemiek van Vleuten, who missed this year’s race after breaking her wrist last week in the Giro Rosa.

Dygert, 23, had a 26-second lead at the 14-kilometer time check of the 31-kilometer race. Full results are here.

Dygert qualified for the Tokyo Olympics when she won last year’s world time trial title. She has been bidding to make the Olympics on the road and the track.

Worlds continue Friday with the men’s time trial airing on Olympic Channel and NBC Sports Gold for Cycling Pass subscribers at 8:15 a.m. ET. A full TV schedule is here.

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MORE: USA Cycling names Olympic team finalists

2020 French Open men’s singles draw, bracket

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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.

FRENCH OPEN DRAWS: Men | Women | TV Schedule

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