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THE INSIDE TRACK | Newswire

U.S. Soccer Player Ramos Out Because of Knee Injury

November 27, 1996|From Staff and Wire Reports

U.S. national soccer team midfielder Tab Ramos will miss four to six months after injuring his left knee in Sunday's World Cup qualifier against Trinidad and Tobago.

Ramos, a veteran of two World Cups and 74 internationals, will undergo arthroscopic reconstructive surgery on the anterior cruciate ligament within two weeks.

The 5-foot-7 Ramos was hurt when he was tripped from behind in the 79th minute of the Americans' 1-0 victory.

"This is a significant loss," Coach Steve Sampson said. "However, the strength of our squad provides enough depth to carry on effectively without him."

Sampson said Preki Radosavljevic likely will replace Ramos for the next qualifying game Dec. 1 against Costa Rica. The U.S. needs at least two points in its last three games, or any Guatemala loss or tie, to clinch a spot in the final round of qualifying for the 1998 World Cup.

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Juventus of Turin won the world club championship, beating River Plate of Argentina, 1-0, in the Intercontinental Cup on an 81st-minute goal by Alessandro Del Piero.

Juventus won the matchup of European and South American champions for the second time, having beaten Argentinos Juniors in 1985. South America leads Europe, 20-15, in the series. Before a crowd of 48,000 at National Stadium, Del Piero beat River goalkeeper Roberto Bonano after Angelo Di Livio's corner kick was headed toward the net by Zinedine Zidane.

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A Kuwaiti soccer player who spit at a referee was suspended for a year and fined nearly $3,900 by FIFA, world soccer's governing body. Hussein Ali had a dispute with the official during a Gulf Cup match.

FIFA also fined the national associations of Zimbabwe and Tanzania $11,650 each for competing in an unsanctioned event.

Women's Basketball

The NCAA has ordered Oregon starting center Renae Fegent to sit out the first four games of the season because she played for a semi-professional team in Australia, the school announced Tuesday.

Another Oregon player, sophomore center Natasha O'Brien, must sit out this season, forfeit a year of eligibility and repay a $3,000 stipend she received for living expenses while participating in the Australian league.

Both Fegent and O'Brien are from Australia.

Fegent, a first-team, all-conference selection for Oregon the past two seasons, has started all 57 games for the Ducks since arriving at the school three years ago. She averaged 13.9 points and 7.7 rebounds per game a year ago.

Fegent violated an NCAA rule by receiving housing and transportation expenses while playing for the Canberra Capitals prior to coming to Oregon in 1994.

O'Brien played for the Melbourne Tigers a year ago and enrolled in Oregon this fall. She also received housing and transportation expenses, as well as the stipend she must repay.

Olympics

In a possible breakthrough in the fight against doping, International Olympic Committee experts met to review a test for detecting the performance-enhancing drug EPO.

Prince Alexandre de Merode, IOC medical commission chairman, is presiding over the two-day session, which is also expected to address whether to re-test the positive samples of four unidentified athletes from the Atlanta Olympics.

EPO, or erythropoietin, is a naturally occurring substance which draws oxygen into a user's bloodstream. A synthetic form of EPO is considered the drug of choice in endurance sports, particularly cycling.

The Italian woman who finished fourth in the high jump at the Atlanta Olympics had her result wiped out because of a previous drug violation.

Antonella Bevilacqua twice tested positive for the banned stimulant ephedrine last May, and track and field's ruling body retroactively imposed a three-month suspension. The ban covers the period from May 26 to Aug. 25.

Miscellany

Mohini Bhardwaj and Alexis Norman, considered two of the nation's top gymnast recruits, have signed national letters of intent to attend UCLA. Bhardwaj was a top 10 finisher at the 1996 Olympic Trials and national runnerup on the balance beam earlier this year. A three-time national-team member, she trains under Rita Brown and Alexander Alexandrov at Brown's Gymnatics in Houston, Texas.

Norman placed first on floor and fourth in the all-around at the 1996 Elite National Championships.

A dinner to help raise funds for an annual Allan Malamud journalism scholarship at USC will be held Wednesday night, Feb. 12, at Hollywood Park. Malamud, a USC graduate who died Sept. 16, was a longtime Herald Examiner sports columninst and sports editor and wrote the Notes on a Scorecard column in The Times. Dinner details: (213) 740-4632.

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