Becker Drops Out Because of Illness

From Staff and Wire Reports

Without playing a match, Boris Becker withdrew from the Lipton Championships because of a respiratory infection, extending his misfortune at the Key Biscayne, Fla., tennis tournament.

Becker has yet to reach the Lipton quarterfinals in eight tries since 1985.

In Friday's matches, Steffi Graf, co-ranked No. 1 among women with Monica Seles, struggled against Sandra Cacic, winning 6-1, 7-5, in Graf's opening match. She had a first-round bye.

Stefan Edberg of Sweden, playing his last year on the tour, won a first-round match between two 30-year-old veterans when he defeated Emilio Sanchez of Spain, 6-7 (8-6), 6-3, 6-2.

Becker's illness has run about four weeks now. The Australian Open champion, ranked fifth, has played only two matches since Feb. 26, losing both.


Top-seeded Yevgeny Kafelnikov of Russia defeated Jeff Tarango, 7-5, 6-3, in the quarterfinals of the St. Petersburg Open. Second-seeded Daniel Vacek, bothered by a stomach illness, withdrew while losing, 2-1, in the first set to Magnus Gustaffson.


Pittsburgh Steeler running back Byron "Bam" Morris and a passenger in his car, Rodney Dwayne Reynolds, were released from jail on bail after their arrest near Dallas for possession of marijuana. During a stop for a traffic violation, police searching Morris' leased car found more than six pounds of marijuana in the trunk.


Lennie Clements had six birdies en route to a six-under-par 66 and a one-shot lead over Tom Watson after two rounds of the Freeport-McDermott Classic in New Orleans. Clements, who has not won in 16 years on the PGA Tour, is at 11-under 133. Watson, who has not won in nine years, had seven birdies and a bogey in shooting 66.

Scott McCarron is at nine under and five players were seven under, including defending champion Davis Love III.

Orville Moody and Jimmy Powell combined for a seven-under-par 65 to take the first-round lead in the Legends of Golf at La Quinta. Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player were one shot behind in the team event at the PGA West Stadium Course, and Simon Hobday and George Archer were alone at 67.

Brandie Burton shot a three-under-par 70 to tie Val Skinner and Marianne Morris for the lead after the second round of the LPGA's Standard Register Ping in Phoenix. They are at 140 for the 36 holes.

Winter Sports

Kyle Rasmussen won the U.S. Alpine Championships' super-giant slalom by 0.05 seconds at Sugarloaf/USA in Carrabassett Valley, Maine, for his first national title. The victory came a day after he had stormed off the course after a disappointing downhill, normally his best event. Picabo Street was the women's downhill winner, in 1 minute 24.36 seconds for the 1.72-mile run.


The Dallas Cowboys signed free-agent linebacker Broderick Thomas from the Minnesota Vikings. That came after the Vikings said they were dumping Thomas, who had been charged with drunk driving and possession of an unauthorized handgun in Texas for a second time in six months.

Pittsburgh freshman wide receiver Demale Stanley fractured his neck during practice, damaging his spinal cord.

Auto Racing

Crashes hospitalized Indy Racing League drivers Eddie Cheever, Stan Wattles and Buddy Lazier and knocked out four cars at Phoenix International Raceway, cutting short practice Friday for the Dura-Lube 200. Lazier has a broken bone in the back of his pelvis.

Ward Burton's Pontiac turned a qualifying lap of 173.797 mph to win the pole for Sunday's TranSouth Financial 400 NASCAR Winston Cup event at Darlington Raceway.


Stanford is in command as it goes for the NCAA women's swimming and diving title at Ann Arbor, Mich. The Cardinal had 348 points after two days of competition, followed by Southern Methodist with 279. USC is third with 254.

Ethan Watts had 12 kills to lead the U.S. men's national volleyball team to a 15-6, 15-10, 15-7 victory over Spain in an exhibition match at San Diego.

Three Iowa wrestlers reached the NCAA finals, putting the Hawkeyes closer to their second consecutive national title.

Ghana, Nigeria and Tunisia, the top three teams from the men's African Olympic soccer tournament, have joined five other teams to qualify for the Olympics.

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