Sports Briefs

Posted: Sunday, July 16, 2000

Davis Cup: Australia moves into final

BRISBANE, Australia -- Mark Woodforde and Sandon Stolle rallied from behind Saturday to win the doubles and give defending champion Australia a spot in the Davis Cup final.

Woodforde, who won the Wimbledon doubles with Todd Woodbridge, and Stolle beat Brazil's Gustavo Kuerten and Jaime Oncins 6-7 (3), 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4, giving Australia a 3-0 lead.

Australia, which won its 27th Davis Cup by defeating France in the final last year, completed its 5-0 victory Sunday in the reverse singles.

Qualifying Round

Ecuador 2, Britain 1

WIMBLEDON, England -- Brothers Nicolas and Giovanni Lapentti of Ecuador teamed Saturday to defeat Britain's Tim Henman and Arvind Parmar and give the South Americans a 2-1 lead in their Davis Cup World Group qualifier.

Netherlands 3, Uzbekistan 0

TASHKENT, Uzbekistan -- Sjeng Schalken and Paul Haarhuis of the Netherlands defeated Oleg Ogorodov and Dmitry Tomashevic of Uzbekistan in doubles play Saturday to give the Dutch an insurmountable 3-0 lead in their best-of-five Davis Cup World Group qualifying round.

Romania 2, Zimbabwe 1

HARARE, Zimbabwe -- Andrei Pavel and Gabriel Trifu won Saturday's doubles to give Romania a 2-1 lead over Zimbabwe in a Davis Cup World Group qualifying tie.

Three rowers test positive for banned drugs

LUCERNE, Switzerland -- International Rowing Federation (FISA) president Denis Oswald revealed Saturday that three rowers had tested positive for banned substances earlier this season.

However, Oswald, bound by FISA rules, refused to give further details until the athletes involved and their federations were informed of the results.

''The executive committee of the federation is dealing with the cases,'' said Oswald, speaking at a press conference at the World Cup rowing final in Lucerne. ''According to our rules, the procedure is to remain confidential until the athletes involved and their federations are informed of the decision.''

Navratilova inducted into hall of fame

NEWPORT, R.I. -- Standing in the Newport Casino where hundreds gathered to watch her induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame, Martina Navratilova spoke of another court.

It was in her Czech homeland, where her family paid club dues by pulling up weeds and putting down clay. It was where, as a young girl, she and her father would hit balls for hours, arriving home to a mother upset that dinner had gone cold.

On Saturday, Navratilova, fresh from a visit to Prague and that humble court, recounted the sacrifices she, her relatives and friends made on her journey to reshaping women's tennis and perhaps all of women's sports.

Torres wins 50 free

LOS ANGELES -- A month after becoming the oldest swimmer to break an American record, the 33-year-old Dara Torres won the 50-meter freestyle over rivals Jenny Thompson and Amy Van Dyken in the Janet Evans Invitational on Saturday night.

Torres swam 25.04 seconds, well off the American record of 24.73 she set last month in Santa Clara. Her coach, Richard Quick, sent Torres to the blocks with instructions to go under 25 seconds.

''I wasn't thrilled with my time, but it was a good time considering I just got done with the 200 (freestyle),'' she said. ''I feel good. I keep improving.''

Thompson finished second in 25.22 and Van Dyken, the '96 Olympic champion, was third in 25.32.

Three races earlier, Torres was third in the 200 free, while Thompson was second.

''My 50 surprised me. It was two one-hundreths off my best time,'' said Thompson, who set an American record in the 100 free Friday night.

''I was going into it having fun because the competition was stiff.''

The women's 50 offered a preview of next month's Olympic trials in Indianapolis. Torres, Thompson and Van Dyken will battle for two available Olympic berths in swimming's glamour event. Torres predicted the winning time will be under her American record.

Van Dyken, a four-time gold medalist in Atlanta, was encouraged by her time just five months after shoulder surgery.

''That was my best time in-season ever,'' she said. ''I still do rehab every Monday and ice all the time. I still do have pain, but it's very minimal. It's stuff I can deal with.''

Kristen Caverly of San Clemente upset world record-holder Penny Heyns of South Africa to win the 200 breaststroke in 2:29.83.

''I really wanted to beat Penny Heyns. She's an awesome swimmer, but I'm sure that's not all she can give,'' said Caverly, who came on in the final meters. ''I didn't believe I won that race and I'm very happy.''

Heyns, the '96 Olympic champion, was second in 2:29.89. Amanda Beard of Irvine, who finished second to Heyns in the Atlanta Games, was sixth.

Heyns was still tired from traveling to South Africa last week.

''Right now my biggest problem is fatigue,'' she said. ''I managed to pick the last 50 up from this morning. I'm going out fine but I don't have the second half.''

She plans to swim in next month's Canadian Olympic trials, her final tuneup for the Sydney Games. Heyns trains in Calgary, Alberta.

''I hope to swim a little more decent there and refine things in training,'' she said.

Ryk Neethling, Heyns' countryman who swims for Arizona, also was tired from the same trip last week. But he won the 200 freestyle in 1:50.98 over Bela Szabados of Hungary, who was competing in his home pool on the Southern California campus.

''Every day I'm getting better,'' said Neethling, who shunned the popular high-tech body suit being worn at the meet for old-fashioned briefs. ''It's a good time. I wanted to swim in the briefs and go fast.''

In the men's 50 free, Anthony Ervin of Phoenix set a meet record to win in 22.30 seconds. Bart Kizierowski of Mission Viejo was second in 22.32. Gary Hall, a silver medalist in the 50 at the 1996 Olympics, was third in 22.63.

In other races, Morgan Knabe of Canada won the 200 breaststroke in 2:16.91; and Claudia Poll of Costa Rica won the 200 freestyle in 1:58.02, breaking the 12-year-old meet record of 2:00.47 set by her sister, Sylvia.

Canadians Curtis Myden and Joanne Malar won the 400 individual medley races in meet record times. Myden swam 4:22.60 and Malar won in 4:41.47.

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