LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) _ An agreement Friday between two rival federations opens the way for all of the world’s top beach volleyball players to compete in next month’s World Championships in Los Angeles.
The two groups have been at odds for years over who controls the sport _ the International Volleyball Federation, the sport’s world governing body, and the Association of Volleyball Professionals, which runs the main beach volleyball tour in the United States.
The international federation said the agreement will allow players to participate in both the FIVB World Tour and the Miller Lite/AVP Tour. The world’s best two-man teams will compete in the first World Championships at UCLA on Sept. 10-13.
South Africa, Congo set for tense match
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) _ South Africa and the Republic of Congo play a soccer World Cup qualifier Saturday. The winner will go to the tournament finals next year in Paris for the first time and the loser will have to wait at least another four years.
Ill feeling has existed between the two teams since Congo won 2-0 in the first-round of their African Group Three match.
The South Africans were unhappy with the treatment they received, especially when soldiers brandishing rifles showed up at the practice field.
When the Congolese arrived Wednesday they refused to stay in the hotel or use the bus arranged by the South African Football Association. On Thursday, they rejected their training facility and went to Pretoria to practice.
``I don’t know what they are trying to do, but it doesn’t worry us,″ South African coach Clive Barker said. ``We are concentrating on the game and nothing else.
Fujita takes lead at Acom International
IWAKI, Japan (AP) _ Hiroyuki Fujita had an eagle and five birdies Friday to surge into a two-point lead over Kazuo Kanayama after two rounds of the Acom International golf tournament.
Fujita, winless in seven years as a pro, picked up 14 points for a two-day total of 25 points at the Seve Ballesteros Golf Club course.
Australian Peter McWhinney and first-round leader Shingo Katayama were tied for second with 22 points.
The tournament’s modified Stableford scoring system awards 8 points for a double eagle, 5 for an eagle, 2 for a birdie, zero for par, minus-1 for a bogey and minus-3 for a double bogey or worse.
First inning exits for Givens, West
TOKYO (AP) _ Two former major league pitchers had bad nights in Japan on Friday. Neither got past the first inning.
Brian Givens of the Seibu Lions, who once pitched for the Milwaukee Brewers, left without retiring a single batter after allowing three runs on So Taguchi’s homer and two consecutive bases-loaded walks.
The Pacific League’s front-running Orix BlueWave trounced the second-place Lions 11-5.
David West, who last pitched in the majors for the Philadelphia Phillies, was knocked out in the first inning after giving up three runs. and the Nippon Ham Fighters beat the Daiei Hawks 4-1.
Brazilian Rivaldo becomes Spanish soccer’s most expensive signing
BARCELONA, Spain (AP) _ Brazilian midfielder Rivaldo became Spanish soccer’s most expensive signing Friday when he joined FC Barcelona for a $25 million transfer fee.
Rivaldo, who leaves Deportivo de La Coruna of Spain, may make his debut for Barcelona on Saturday in an exhibition against Italy’s Sampdoria.
Following four hours of talks with club vice president Joan Gaspart, Rivaldo signed for five seasons
The transfer fee topped the $19.8 million paid by Atletico de Madrid for Brazilian star Juninho earlier this summer.