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THE INSIDE TRACK | NEWSWIRE

Featherweight Boxer Dies After Post-Fight Collapse

October 26, 2000|From Staff and Wire Reports

A boxer who collapsed into a coma after a fight last week died Wednesday without regaining consciousness.

Robert Benson, 24, a featherweight from Saugus, Mass., who fought under the ring name Bobby Tomasello, died at New England Medical Center in Boston.

Benson had just fought Steve Dotse of Ghana to a 10-round draw Friday night in Boston when he collapsed in his dressing room.

He was taken to the hospital, where he underwent surgery Saturday morning to remove a blood clot, relieve swelling and stop bleeding in his brain.

He had been in a coma since Friday, said Tony Cardinale, Benson's promoter and mentor.

Benson had a professional record of 14-0-1, with eight knockouts. The fight was his first 10-round bout.

Jurisprudence

A year to the day after Payne Stewart died in a bizarre airplane crash in South Dakota, the golfer's family filed a lawsuit in Orlando, Fla., against the craft's owner and operator.

The lawsuit filed in Orange County Circuit Court by Tracey Stewart and her children seeks an unspecified amount of damages.

It accuses Sunjet Aviation Inc., and Jet Shares One Inc., of negligence.

Lawsuits also were filed by the families of three others who died in the crash: Stewart's agents, Van Ardan and Robert Fraley, and golf course designer Bruce Borland.

The Learjet's cabin-pressure system wasn't properly inspected, maintained or repaired, according to the lawsuit. In addition, the oxygen-supply system and a valve in the engine weren't properly maintained and the plane's crew failed to take proper corrective measures in the emergency, according to the complaint.

Tennis

Top-ranked Martina Hingis of Switzerland breezed into the quarterfinals of the $2.05-million Kremlin Cup, crushing Kveta Hrdlickova of the Czech Republic, 6-0, 6-1.

In the quarterfinals at Moscow, Hingis will face Elena Dementieva of Russia, seeded seventh, who struggled past Silvia Farina-Elia of Italy, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4.

In other matches, Tatiana Panova of Russia, who upset sixth-seeded Julie Halard-Decugis of France in the first round, reached the quarterfinals by eliminating Paola Suarez of Argentina, 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.

In men's first-round play, wild card Mikhail Youzhny of Russia upset fifth-seeded Fabrice Santoro of France, 6-4, 6-2.

Second-seeded Yevgeny Kafelnikov ousted countryman Denis Golovanov, 7-6 (4), 6-4, and David Prinosil of Germany downed Daniel Nestor, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-3.

Thomas Enqvist of Sweden outlasted Jan-Michael Gambill, 7-6 (14), 7-6 (5), in the opening round of the $1-million Swiss Indoors tournament in Basel.

Tim Henman of Britain, who ended a two-year title drought two weeks ago in Vienna, beat Spanish qualifier Tommy Robredo, 6-3, 6-4.

Top-seeded Anne-Gaelle Sidot of France advanced to the quarterfinals of the Eurotel Slovak Indoor tournament with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 victory over Cristina Valero Torrens of Spain in Bratislava, Slovakia.

The first-round Davis Cup match between Switzerland and the United States will be played Feb. 9-11 at a 7,000-seat indoor facility, St. Jakobshalle, in Basel, officials said.

Top-ranked Gustavo Kuerten of Brazil has committed to play in the 2001 Mercedes-Benz Cup, July 23-29, at UCLA's Los Angeles Tennis Center, tournament director Bob Kramer announced. U.S. Open champion Marat Safin has already committed to the tournament.

Cycling

The International Cycling Union knew Laurent Brochard's medical papers were falsified when he won the 1997 world road cycling championship.

Brochard said in Lille, France, that he was injected with painkillers for a back injury several days before the competition in San Sebastien, Spain, and that his medical papers were backdated.

France's Arnaud Tournant won the kilometer time trial in 1 minute, 1.619 seconds on the opening day of the World track cycling championship in Manchester, England.

Soccer

Daniel Hernandez, a 24-year-old midfielder who helped stabilize the New York-New Jersey MetroStars' defense, signed a four-year contract.

Acquired in a trade with Tampa Bay on April 19, Hernandez played in 15 games and recorded two assists before suffering a season-ending knee injury in a U.S. Open Cup match against Tampa Bay on July 25.

Christoph Daum, dropped as Germany's designated national coach for failing a drug test, wants to prove his innocence by taking a second test in the United States.

A 57-year-old Real Madrid fan was arrested after a fan for rival Barcelona was shot to death following an argument over the Barcelona-Leeds European Champions League game that ended in a tie.

The Real Madrid supporter, who lived across the street from the Barcelona fan in the town of Chinchilla de Villar, thought the Catalan side had lost the game and celebrated with firecrackers in the street, prompting an argument that ended with the shooting, according to the Europa Press news agency.

College Basketball

The College of Charleston suspended senior guard James Griffin for three games for playing in unsanctioned summer league games.

South Florida suspended women's Coach Jerry Ann Winters after an in-house investigation found evidence she retaliated against Dione Smith, a black former player who sued the school over the alleged racial incident. Winters has 15 days to appeal the indefinite suspension.

The Big East and Madison Square Garden announced an agreement that will keep the conference's postseason tournament at the arena through 2011. The tournament has been played at Madison Square Garden since 1983.

Miscellany

Steve Schoenfeld, a longtime national football writer who recently left the Arizona Republic to work for CBS SportsLine.com, was killed by a hit-and-run driver in Tempe. No arrest has been made.

Baseball, football, basketball and hockey accounted for 73% of the 422 million spectators at sports events in the United States and Canada last year, according to a study by The Sports Business Daily.

Baseball drew 28%, followed by football and basketball at 15%, and hockey at 14%.

*

T.J. Simers has the day off.

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