Wheaton, Stich to meet in Grand SlamDavid Wheaton of the...

Sports briefly

December 14, 1991

Wheaton, Stich to meet in Grand Slam

David Wheaton of the United States and Wimbledon champion Michael Stich of Germany moved to a semifinal meeting with victories yesterday in the Compaq Grand Slam Cup tennis tournament in Munich, Germany.

Wheaton saved four set points in the second set to beat Todd Woodbridge of Australia, 6-4, 7-6 (8-6).

Stich, aided by a disputed call in the key game of the second set, beat France's Guy Forget, 7-6 (10-8), 6-4.

"Bad calls sometimes are part of the game," Forget said. "You have to deal with it."

With Forget serving at 4-4, a shot by Stich that appeared out was intentionally hit into the net by Forget.

The linesman called Stich's ball good and the decision was upheld by French umpire Bruno Rebeuh, giving Stich the point and the game to go up by 5-4.

He then held serve to win the match. The World Boxing Council light heavyweight title bout between Jeff Harding of Australia and challenger Christophe Tiozzo, scheduled for March 13 in Marseille, France, will be postponed at least a month because Tiozzo was badly beaten in a restaurant altercation.

Rene Olmeta, a Marseille sports official, said the fight could not take place before April 10 and possibly as late as May 8.

Tiozzo, who lost his World Boxing Association super middleweight title to Panama's Victor Cordoba in April, was cut in the face by pruning shears and need 44 stitches.

* Australian junior lightweight Renato Cornett (19-1-1) scored a unanimous decision over Paquito Openo of the Philippines in a 10-round non-title fight in Sydney. Cornett is rated No. 6 by the World Boxing Organization.

Figure skating

Brian Boitano, competing in Oslo, Norway, earned his fourth straight NutraSweet Challenge of Champions men's title. Debi Thomas unseated defending champion Denise Biellmann to win the women's title. Soviet couples Ekaterina Gordeeva and Sergei Grinkov and Natalia Bestemianova and Andrei Bukin claimed the pairs and ice dancing titles.

The event, which carries a $40,000 first prize, is the European installment of competitions held at the Capital Centre in Landover earlier this month. The competition will be televised Jan. 18, March 14, March 21 and May 30 on ABC's "Wide World of Sports."

Speed skating

Dan Jansen skated the fastest 500 meters in the world this season, setting a track record of 36.59 seconds on the opening night of the U.S. Olympic Speed Skating trials in Milwaukee.

Jansen, who fell twice during the 1988 Olympics, broke the Wisconsin Olympic Ice Rink record of 37.37 seconds, set by his good friend Nick Thometz in 1987.

Germany's Uwe-Jens Mey, the defending Olympic champion, had skated 36.79 three weeks ago to beat Jansen in a 500-meter indoor race at Heerenveen in The Netherlands. Before last night, that had been the fastest 500 of the season.

Olympics

The Olympic flame began its journey to France for the Albertville Winter Games, after being lighted in Ancient Olympia, Greece, the town where the Games were born.

Greek ski champion Thanassis Tsabiris held the Olympic torch in one hand and an olive branch in another as he jogged the first hundred yards of an Olympic journey that will include two airplane flights and a country-wide relay in France.

The flame, lighted in a pine-tree grove by the rays of the sun in a concave mirror, was then transferred to three miners' lamps for the flight from Olympia to Athens.

It will be flown by Concorde supersonic jet to Paris today, where it will be handed over to French Prime Minister Edith Cresson before a relay that will end in Albertville, France, on Feb. 8. The flame will burn throughout the Games.

Baseball

A man was sentenced to one year in jail for striking an umpire with an aluminum baseball bat while arguing over a suspended Little League game in Vancouver, Wash.

Steven Fuller, 46, of La Center, Wash., was convicted in October of second-degree assault with a deadly weapon. At a sentencing hearing Thursday, Superior Court Judge James Ladley allowed Fuller to serve his time on nights and weekends so he could keep operating his trucking business.

Golf

Tina Barrett of Baltimore beat Juli Inkster, 4 and 3, during the rain-soaked second round of the $500,000 LPGA World Match Play Championship in Princeville, Hawaii.

Defending champion Betsy King took Caroline Keggi, 4 and 3. King was 2-up at the turn when rain forced a 40-minute delay at the Princeville Resort's 6,212-yard, par-72 Makai Course.

* Don January, the oldest player in the field, shot a 5-under-par 67 in Dorado, Puerto Rico, for the first-round lead of the New York Life Champions, the season-ending event on the Senior PGA Tour. January, 62, has not won in four seasons.

Walter Zembriski and Orville Moody were second, one stroke back.

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