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South Korea proposes unified Korea Olympic women’s hockey team

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South Korea proposed adding North Korean players to its Olympic women’s hockey team, a government sports official said Friday, according to Yonhap News Agency.

“Even if we have one Korean team in women’s hockey, we’ll make sure it will not come at the expense of South Korean players,” the official said, according to the report, which added that a proposal was also put forth to have the two Koreas march together in the Feb. 9 Opening Ceremony.

North Korea agreed Tuesday to send a delegation to the PyeongChang Olympics, though the nation currently has no qualified athletes.

Officials from both Koreas and the IOC are set to meet Jan. 20 to discuss the North’s Olympic participation.

The IOC can add North Korean athletes to the Winter Games and is expected to invite a North Korean pairs figure skating team.

There were reports last year of a possible unified Korean Olympic women’s hockey team in PyeongChang, but that plan ran into the roadblock of potentially costing South Korean national-team players Olympic spots.

Yonhap reported Friday that the South Korea Olympic Committee hopes it would be allowed to expand the women’s hockey roster from 23 players to 35 to accommodate North Koreans without cutting any South Koreans.

It’s unknown if North Korea has agreed to a potential unified team.

North Korea sent its women’s hockey team to a lower-level world championship tournament in South Korea in April. The two Koreas played, with the South winning 3-0.

The North Korean team was cheered by fans waving the blue-and-white “unification” flag seen when the two nations marched together at the Olympic Opening Ceremonies in 2000 and 2004.

South Korea is fielding its first Olympic hockey teams this year, receiving spots as the host nation.

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MORE: PyeongChang Olympic hockey schedule

2020 French Open women’s singles draw, results

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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.

FRENCH OPEN DRAWS: Men | Women | TV Schedule

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2020 French Open men’s singles draw, results

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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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