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Gianluigi Buffon dreams of another Olympic chance

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Gianluigi Buffon wants to finish his career at the Olympics, some 24 years after he came to the Atlanta Games and didn’t play a single minute, according to Gazzetta dello Sport. At 42, he would be older than any previous Olympic soccer participant, according to Olympic historians.

If Buffon has any career regrets, one has to be the Olympics.

The legendary Italian goalie, then 18, appeared in line to play at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

Until the federation made use of a new rule allowing three players over the age of 23 per team. One of the chosen ones was 29-year-old Gianluca Pagliuca, who was Italy’s No. 1 at the 1994 World Cup. Buffon was still on the team, but he didn’t play a minute in Atlanta behind Pagliuca. Italy bowed out in the group stage.

Buffon said in 2008 that, after what happened in Atlanta, he would not accept a potential invitation to be on the Olympic team as an overage player, taking the place of one of the U23 keepers, according to the newspaper. Only junior players are allowed in Olympic qualifying, with the overage exceptions brought in for the Games.

Italy still must qualify for Tokyo. The top four nations at the European Under-21 Championship later this month earn berths. Italy and San Marino are co-hosts.

Buffon said in May 2018 that he retired from the national team.

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Chloe Dygert crashes over guard rail, fails to finish world championships time trial

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American Chloé Dygert crashed over a guard rail and failed to finish the world road cycling championships time trial, where she appeared en route to a repeat title in Imola, Italy.

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, her legs appearing bloodied, was tended to by several people, put on a stretcher and taken to a hospital.

“All we know is that she is conscious and talking,” according to USA Cycling, about 25 minutes after the crash. “More updates to come.”

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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