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SYDNEY 2000 / SUMMER OLYMPIC GAMES | NOTES

Kayaker Gets an OK to Compete for U.S.

September 25, 2000|From Staff and Wire Reports

Cuban-born kayaker Angel Perez cleared another legal obstacle in his bid to compete in the Olympics for the United States.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport on Sunday threw out a legal filing by Cuba that essentially appealed the panel's decision last week to allow Perez to be part of the U.S. team. His first race is today.

"CAS said Cuba had proper notice about the previous hearing," said Mark Muedeking, general counsel for the U.S. Olympic Committee. "Cuba could have appeared then or asked for a postponement to prepare its case."

Perez competed for Cuba in the 1992 Olympics, then defected to the United States in 1993. He became a permanent resident in '95, began competing internationally on U.S. teams in '97 and received citizenship in '99.

Olympic rules require anyone changing nationalities to have three years of citizenship in their new country or to get permission from the spurned nation. Cuba denied Perez and several other athletes seeking to compete for other countries.

CAS rejected a USOC bid to make Perez eligible, but reversed itself in a second filing personally made by Perez.

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The father of U.S. women's gymnast Jamie Dantzscher remained in intensive care after surgery to relieve pressure on his brain. John Dantzscher underwent the surgery after he and another daughter were in a car accident Friday. Doctors called the first 48 hours critical, and said they were guardedly optimistic about his recovery.

Dantzscher and daughter Jennifer were riding in a taxicab in downtown Sydney when it was hit by a bus. Jennifer, 21, was treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital.

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A night featuring wins by Marion Jones and Maurice Greene in the 100-meter dashes drew the second-lowest rating of NBC's Olympic coverage.

Saturday's telecast, the ninth of the Games, drew a 13.5 rating and 25 share. That's 3% better than the national rating for the previous Saturday.

The broadcast peaked from 10-10:30 p.m. EDT, which included the United States winning the women's medley swim relay in record time, with a 15.6 rating and 27 share.

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An Uzbek track and field coach pleaded guilty to trying to smuggle the performance-enhancing human growth hormone into Australia before the Olympics.

Sergei Voynov was fined $5,500 for trying to bring 15 vials of the banned substance into Sydney. HGH is undetectable using current doping tests.

Under Australian drug trafficking laws, Voynov had faced a maximum fine of $55,000.

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An Ugandan Olympic swimmer arrested in Adelaide on a sexual-assault charge was returned to Sydney by police.

Joe Atuhaire, 22, was charged by Sydney police with sexual intercourse without consent involving a 17-year-old girl in the Sydney suburb of Lidcombe last Wednesday.

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Three days after it was discovered halfway through the competition that the height of the vault was incorrectly measured, Russian gymnastics officials filed a letter of protest with the International Olympic Committee.

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