In brief - 2004-10-20

  • 2004-10-20
Latvian prosecutors have dropped their case against a woman who ran topless onto the field during a World Cup qualifying game between Latvian and Portugal last month, causing a three-minute delay to the game. Liene Baldure, or "Zemene" (Strawberry), earned celebrity status in Latvia as the nation's first ever streaker. Prosecutors charged Baldure with hooliganism, which carries a possible jail sentence of two years, but now say that if she stays out of trouble for the next six months, they'll drop the charges.

A top Greek sports journalist was attacked by assailants in motorcycle helmets on Oct. 18 in what his newspaper described as an assassination attempt. Police said Filippos Sirigos, sports editor at the major daily Eleftherotypia, was stabbed multiple times and beaten with crowbars in central Athens as he left a weekly radio show he hosts. Prosecutors have called Sirigos as a witness in several high-profile sports investigations, including the case of Greece's top two sprinters who withdrew from the Athens Olympic. He was also sued for libel by the Athens Games chief Gianna Angelopoulos and her husband and has written stories about corruption in Greece's soccer clubs and doping allegations in weightlifting and athletics.

Adrian Mutu, the Romanian striker who plays for English Premier League side Chelsea, has admitted taking cocaine after testing positive in a drug test. His admission means that he forfeits the right to a second test but is also likely to mitigate his punishment and the possibility of a lengthy two-year ban. The gifted player has fallen out of favor with new Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho, who ordered the test after Mutu missed a training session. Mutu has been ordered to stay away from Chelsea's training ground for the time being.

After winning his fourth straight world MotoGP title on Oct 17, Valentino Rossi said that he expected his former team Honda to provide an even tougher challenge than it did this year. "They will come back very strong, but I think we will also be faster because we will have all the data from this year," the diminutive Italian said. Rossi clinched the world championship in his first year at Yamaha after switching from Honda and won the Australian MotGP in exhilarating style, overtaking fierce rival Gibernau on the last lap and crossing the line just 0.097 seconds ahead.