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Martin Says He'll Fight Ouster From Ryder Cup in Court

September 04, 1997|From Staff and Wire Reports

Miguel Angel Martin said he will go to court to save his place on Europe's Ryder Cup golf team. He blamed team captain and fellow Spaniard Seve Ballesteros for being part of a plot to drop him from the team.

Martin, who earned the last of 10 automatic berths, was kicked off the European team Tuesday after refusing to play 18 holes to prove his surgically repaired wrist had healed enough to allow him to compete in the Sept. 26-28 Ryder Cup.

Martin said he expected to be fit to play when the matches begin in three weeks in southern Spain. He said Ballesteros wanted him off the team so he could replace him with his friend, Jose Maria Olazabal.

With Olazabal on the team--he finished 11th in the final standings--Ballesteros was expected to name Nick Faldo of England and Jesper Parnevik of Sweden as his two captain's picks. Had Olazabal not made the team, Ballesteros would have had to chose among the three.

Jurisprudence

Florida State settled its contract dispute with former women's basketball coach Chris Gobrecht for $108,000, less than one-third of what had been originally sought. The university filed a breach-of-contract lawsuit seeking $380,000 after Gobrecht resigned May 7 to become head coach at USC, her alma mater.

Toronto Maple Leaf center Brandon Convery was given a conditional discharge after he pleaded guilty to assaulting a Kingston, Canada, bar manager last May. Convery was sentenced to six months' probation, 40 hours of community service and must send letters of apology to the club manager and three bouncers.

A judge rejected former Nebraska football player Scott Baldwin's $1-million lawsuit against the city of Omaha, saying two police officers were negligent in a shooting that left Baldwin paralyzed, but Baldwin was more to blame. Baldwin's attorneys said they will appeal.

Track and Field

Venuste Niyongabo of Burundi ran the third-fastest 2,000 meters ever, and Kenyans Moses Kiptanui and Daniel Komen won their races but failed to set world records at the Rieti Grand Prix II meet in Italy.

Niyongabo, the 1996 Olympic champion in the 5,000, won the rarely contested 2,000 in 4 minutes 49 seconds.

Kiptanui won the 3,000 steeplechase in 8:00.54, nearly five seconds off countryman Bernard Barmasai's world record. Komen won the mile in 3:47.85, the sixth-best time this year.

Auto Racing

Medical tests have found no cause for Dale Earnhardt's health problems during the Southern 500, and the seven-time Winston Cup champion was waiting for NASCAR clearance to resume racing.

Earnhardt, 46, twice nodded off at the wheel before Sunday's race and then wrecked on the first lap and had trouble finding the pits.

College Basketball

Junior forward Kevin Simmons and senior center Keon Clark of Nevada Las Vegas were ruled ineligible for part of the season for taking extra benefits from an agent during a trip to Florida. The NCAA's eligibility staff declared Simmons ineligible for the first 14 games and Clark ineligible for the first 11.

Kansas junior guard Jelani Janisse, a transfer from Los Angeles City College, underwent surgery to repair a torn ligament in his left ankle.

Former Mississippi State point guard Marcus Bullard, who spent nearly a year in prison for pistol-whipping another student, will play basketball at Auburn Montgomery. Since Bullard is transferring from an NCAA Division I school to an NAIA school, he will be eligible immediately.

Connecticut's Shea Ralph, the Big East women's rookie of the year in 1996, has been lost for the season after sustaining the same knee injury that cut short her freshman season.

Miscellany

Steve Fisher, who left Marina del Rey on July 18 in an attempt to become the first to windsurf to the west coast to Hawaii, reached Maui late Wednesday night, according to Jaiom Berger, who was monitoring his journey. Fisher had expected to complete the voyage about a week earlier, but he experienced light winds.

A new test on a urine sample from Diego Maradona confirmed the soccer player took drugs before a league game 10 days ago, the Argentine Football Assn.

Rioting soccer fans in Asuncion, Paraguay, forced a match between a local team, Sportivo Luqueno, and Brazil's Vitoria to be abandoned midway through the second half.

Bowing to pressure from the public, the prime minister and even the players, soccer officials postponed Scotland's World Cup soccer game against Belarus because it coincided with Princess Diana's funeral.

China led the men's team scoring race after the qualifying round of the World Gymnastics Championships at Lausanne, Switzerland, with 224.394 points, 3.427 ahead of Russia.

Names in the News

Gordie Howe, 69, will make another attempt at becoming the first hockey player to play professionally in six decades. He will announce plans to skate with the Detroit Vipers of the International Hockey League in the team's home opener on Oct. 3, sources told the Oakland Press of Pontiac, Mich. . . . The Chicago Bulls signed free-agent center Joe Kleine.

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