Sports Briefs

AGENCIES

Mon, Feb 26, 2007 - Page 18

■ Soccer
Clashes leave 13 injured

At least 13 people were injured and 27 arrested in Serbia during clashes between fans and riot police after a soccer match between Belgrade rivals Red Star and Partizan, police said yesterday. Red Star fans, angered by their team's 4-2 loss on Saturday, built barricades in downtown Belgrade with trash bins as police on horseback charged at them, witnesses said. At least 27 fans were arrested at the Red Star stadium and in later clashes which left at least 12 fans and one policeman injured, police said. Criminal charges will be filed against five fans for triggering the riots. One fan received serious eye injuries when a flare hit his face, hospital officials said.

■ Athletics

Carl Lewis voices concern

Nine-time Olympic champion Carl Lewis said on Saturday the sport that made him an international celebrity has hit hard times. "It's in trouble," he told reporters at the USA Track & Field indoor championships in Boston. "When I see poker and I don't see track and field on TV -- that's a problem." Lewis, the most outstanding sprinter and long jumper since Jesse Owens, said the sport has partly been tainted by scandals that have stripped some champions of their titles after they tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. "The vast, vast, vast majority of [the athletes] do the right thing, they don't take drugs," Lewis said. "They want to do it right. That's what really bothers me...there is a minority that create problems for the sport."

■ Football

Broncos running back dies

Denver Broncos running back Damien Nash died suddenly on Saturday, the NFL team said in a statement. Nash, 24, reportedly died after collapsing at a charity basketball game in St Louis. The team did not confirm any details or the cause of death. "The Denver Broncos organization is once again struck with profound sadness over the tragic loss of one of our players," team owner Pat Bowlen said. "This is a tremendous tragedy and our hearts go out to the entire Nash family." Nash's death came just two months after the killing of Darrent Williams, who was shot dead on New Year's Eve. Nash attended the University of Missouri and was drafted by Tennessee in 2005, playing three games with the Titans before being released. He signed as a free agent with the Broncos last season and played in three games, rushing for 98 yards on 24 carries.

■ Boxing

Lewis denies comeback plan

Britain's former world heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis yesterday ruled out coming out of retirement for a one-off showdown with old rival Vitali Klitschko. British newspaper reports on Saturday said Lewis, 41, was in training for a big-money rematch with Klitschko, the 35-year-old Ukrainian former world heavyweight champion. Klitschko retired due to injury in 2005 but announced his return last month. However, Lewis insisted he would not go back on his retirement, despite the continuing clamor for a fight with the Ukrainian. "Although I'm flattered that the boxing community is eager to have me back in the ring, I have no plans to return," Lewis said on his Web site. "I have no idea how these rumors get started, but I'm a man of my word -- I will remain retired." Speculation about a showpiece comeback fueled rumors that the boxer was out of cash. But he said: "I'm happy with my life and I don't need to chase a big pay day."