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Agassi Fails in Bid for Victory No. 800; Williams Wins Easily

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

Andre Agassi’s reign in Key Biscayne, Fla., ended Tuesday when he turned tentative.

Five times, Agassi held a set point with a chance to pull even against Agustin Calleri. Each time, Agassi had a look at a second serve but managed only a meek return and lost the point.

The squandered opportunities proved costly for the three-time defending champion, who was upset, 6-2, 7-6 (2), in the fourth round of the Nasdaq-100 Open.

“I missed some chances,” Agassi said. “I needed to step it up and play to his standard, and I didn’t do that.”

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Agassi had won 19 consecutive matches in the tournament, and he’s a six-time champion. With a career record of 799-244, he was seeking a milestone victory.

On the women’s side, top-seeded Serena Williams won the tournament’s most lopsided quarterfinal since 1996, beating Jill Craybas, 6-0, 6-1. Williams’ opponent in the semifinals Thursday will be No. 25-seeded Eleni Daniilidou, who beat Karolina Sprem, 6-1, 6-3.

The ATP will not appeal the ruling that cleared 1997 U.S. Open runner-up Greg Rusedski of a doping offense.

On March 10, an anti-doping panel made Rusedski the eighth player who failed a drug test to be exonerated because he took supplements supplied by ATP trainers.

Pro Football

Receiver James Thrash returned to Washington in a trade that sent a 2005 fifth-round draft pick to Philadelphia.

Thrash began his NFL career with four seasons in Washington before signing a five-year deal with the Eagles as a free agent in 2001.

The Redskins also re-signed receiver Darnerien McCants.

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Atlanta signed Ty Detmer as a backup quarterback to help starter Michael Vick adjust to the team’s new offensive system under Coach Jim Mora Jr.

Detmer, who spent the last three seasons with Detroit, played for San Francisco in 1998 under Mora.

Cornerback Denard Walker was waived by Minnesota, a year after signing a four-year contract worth $13 million.

Buffalo cornerback Troy Vincent was elected president of the NFL Players Assn.

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College Football

Janine D’Anniballe, the director of Moving to End Sexual Assault in Boulder, Colo., said two more women have come forward in the last three months to say they were sexually assaulted by University of Colorado players.

She made the new allegations during a public meeting of the panel investigating football recruiting practices at the university. D’Anniballe said confidentiality rules barred her from disclosing details of the latest assault claims.

Tennessee’s James Banks has been suspended indefinitely for violating team rules. Coach Phillip Fulmer did not say what Banks did to be punished.

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Banks was switched to quarterback, his original position, during spring practice. He led the Volunteers in receiving last season with 42 catches for 621 yards and six touchdowns.

Miscellany

David Duval, who hasn’t played in a PGA Tour event in six months, withdrew from next week’s Masters, saying he needs more time to work on his game.

Olympic wrestling champion Rulon Gardner escaped serious injury when he was thrown from a motorcycle after hitting a car in Colorado Springs, Colo. He suffered abrasions on his left hand, shoulder and upper left arm and a bruise on his right heel.

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The United States opened the women’s world hockey championships with a 9-1 victory over Switzerland at Halifax, Canada.

Jamie McMurray was fined $10,000 by NASCAR and placed on probation until Aug. 31 for spinning out Matt Kenseth at Bristol Motor Speedway on Sunday.

Jimmy Spencer will replace Kevin Lepage in the No. 4 Morgan-McClure Motorsports Chevrolet for Sunday’s NASCAR Nextel Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway.


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