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Alena Kostornaya, world’s top figure skater, splits from coach Eteri Tutberidze

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Russian Alena Kostornaya, the top female singles figure skater in the previous abbreviated season, split from coach Eteri Tutberidze, according to Russian media citing Tutberidze’s Instagram.

In a reply to a comment on the post, Tutberidze wrote that an agreement was made in May with two-time Olympic champion Yevgeny Plushenko, who is now a coach with a separate group.

Tutberidze’s Instagram caption indicated that the coach and her team parted with Kostornaya after the skater gave the coaching team a list of other women with which she did not want to share ice time.

Kostornaya has not commented publicly on her coaching situation.

Kostornaya, 16, swept her three Grand Prix Series starts, including December’s Grand Prix Final, and January’s European Championships in her first senior international season.

She was the favorite for March’s world championships before that event was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Tutberidze coached Yevgenia Medvedeva to two world championships and Alina Zagitova to the 2018 Olympic title, but some of Russia’s top skaters, including Medvedeva, left her group in recent years.

Another top young Russian skater, Alexandra Trusova, left Tutberidze for Plushenko in the spring.

“There was a time, when [2014 Olympic team event champion] Yulia [Lipnitskaya] stated her desire against hitting the ice jointly with Yevgenia, and we tried to meet all of her demands, but it didn’t help,” was posted on Tutberidze’s Instagram, according to a TASS translation. “Then Yevgenia decided against skating with Alina. Today we received a list of non-grata girls from Alena, and this is when we decided to part our ways with her.”

MORE: Figure skating’s Junior Grand Prix season canceled

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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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