MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) _ Three more leading players withdrew Thursday from the Federration Cup international women’s team tennis competition due to start in Melbourne on Sunday.
Organizers said Britain’s Jo Durie, ranked 61st in the world, would not make the trip because of a shoulder injury and has been replaced by Julie Salmon.
Yugoslavia, which meets the top-seeded Soviet Union on Sunday’s opening day, will be without its No. 1 player, Sabrina Goles, who is ill. Her place will be taken by Tanya Cerne.
Top-ranked Italian Sandra Cecchini also is ill and has been replaced by Katy Caverzasu.
Already stripped of the world’s top six players - Steffi Graf, Martina Navratilova, Chris Evert, Gabriela Sabatina, Pam Shriver and Manuela Maleeva - the withdrawals were a bitter blow to organizers of the competition. ---
VAL D’ISERE, France (AP) - Switzerland’s Michela Figini, the defending World Cup overall champion, overcame a forced stop on the first run Thursday to post the fastest time on the second timed practice in preparation for the World Cup women’s downhill Friday.
Figini’s time in the second training was the fastest of the day, 1 minute, 10.91 seconds. But she had her problems in the first run down the 6,131-foot course.
″The skier before me fell and I had to stop after about 30 seconds,″ Figini said.
Elisabeth Kirchler of Austria, skiing just before the Swiss, fell and officials waved for Figini to stop.
Figini, the 1984 Olympic and 1985 world downhill champion, also won one of Wednesday’s training runs.
Mild temperatures and little snow have plagued the region. But the temperatures dropped overnight and hardened the surface.
Ulrike Stangassinger of West Germany won the first run in 1:11.54 although France’s Carole Merle, third in 1:11.87, relaxed and slowed considerably well before the finish line. Merle won the opening Super-G race in Austria last week.
Switzerland’s Heidi Zurbriggen came in second in both training runs Thursday.
LIVERPOOL, England (AP) - Danish soccer star Jan Molby was released from an English jail Thursday after serving six weeks for reckless driving.
Molby, who plays league soccer for Liverpool of England’s First Division, was released early from a three-month sentence because of good behavior, authorities said.
He was smuggled out of the prison compound in the trunk of a car to avoid waiting reporters and photographers and made a brief visit to Liverpool’s Anfield Stadium before going home, according to Press Association, Britain’s domestic news service.
A meeting was scheduled Friday to determine Molby’s future with the defending English champions, PA said.