2020/02/12

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Indiana basketball star's career impacted by China's coronavirus

  

The coronavirus has now infected more than 40,000 people worldwide and killed over 1,000, most of those in China.


The numbers are especially frightening for a star basketball player from Indianapolis, who lives in China.


Amber Harris got out right before the outbreak, but the virus is impacting her career.


Training for an athlete never stops. But that's all Amber Harris can do right now.


Her career as a professional basketball player is on hold.


"You know, I miss my team, miss playing right now," Harris said.


The Indianapolis native is the only American on the Wuhan Shengfan, the women's basketball team in Wuhan, China.


She's been playing there for the past two years.


"I still have stuff in Wuhan, and the city's completely shut down," she said.


And so is her team.


Their season's been postponed because of the deadly coronavirus.


Harris was here in Indy, visiting family during the team's month-long break, when things got dangerous at her overseas home.


"I kind of heard about what's going on in Wuhan. I was like, 'OK ... this is crazy. Like what's going on?' And it went from nine people dead to almost 500 people dead," Harris said. "So I text my people and say, 'what's going on?' and they're like, 'yeah, it's really bad. We're going to cancel your flight. You're not going to come back until you know it's safe.' So the season's been postponed ... supposedly we're supposed to come back in March, but I doubt that."


Her Chinese teammates are OK. They're now out of Wuhan as well.


But Harris' future is uncertain.


A city she likes and a career she loves are now in a quarantine zone.


The former North Central High School standout became a star at Xavier, won two championships in the WNBA with the Minnesota Lynx and after playing on a number of teams in different countries overseas settled in China.


She hoped to finish her career there and get about two more years in.


Harris said she's still getting paid right now. And she has a place to stay with her mom in Indianapolis.


But what's next?


"I have no idea how this is going to pan out. Right now it's postponed, but I'm thinking they're probably most likely gonna cancel the season," she said.


Source: https://www.wthr.com





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