Former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali will receive a German peace prize for his human-rights...

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Ali to be honored for human-rights work: Former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali will receive a German peace prize for his human-rights work.

Ali will be awarded the Otto Hahn Medal today in Berlin for his “lifelong engagement in the American civil-rights movement and the global cultural emancipation of blacks, as well as his work as a U.N. goodwill ambassador,” the organization said.

Ali, 63, indicated he was honored to be the first sportsman to receive the award, which is presented every two years.

Cuban heavyweight Gomez tests positive for cocaine: Top Cuban heavyweight Juan Carlos Gomez could be banned for two years after testing positive for cocaine.

Both A and B samples showed traces of cocaine, his German promoter, Universum Box Promotion, said.

Gomez is the World Boxing Council’s fourth-ranked heavyweight.

Gomez defeated Oliver McCall on Oct. 15 and was tested by the Federation of German Pro Fighters, which could impose the ban.

The 34-year-old Gomez was believed to be in the United States and could not be reached for comment, Universum chief Klaus-Peter Kohl said.


A’s ownership group wants to buy MLS expansion team for San Jose: The owners of major-league baseball’s Oakland Athletics have expressed interest in purchasing an expansion franchise from Major League Soccer to quickly return the sport to San Jose, Calif.

The owners of the two-time MLS champion San Jose Earthquakes announced Thursday that the franchise will move to Houston before next season, citing money losses and a difficult arrangement with Spartan Stadium in San Jose. Anschutz Entertainment Group repeatedly tried to sell the Earthquakes to local investors, but couldn’t strike a deal.

San Jose could get an expansion franchise as early as 2007, according to MLS commissioner Don Garber, who already agreed to a letter of intent with the city.


Retrial of suit against Williams family not until at least late 2006: A breach-of-contract lawsuit contending world-class players Venus and Serena Williams and their father backed out of promises for the sisters to play in a 2001 “Battle of the Sexes” match against males won’t be retried until late next year.

The new trial in West Palm Beach, Fla., won’t be held until at least November in deference to the tennis season, attorneys in the case said.

A mistrial was declared earlier this week. An attorney representing Richard Williams, father of Venus and Serena, asked one of the promoters whether someone had given her money in return for a share of any damages won.

Jeffrey A. Winikoff, a Palm Beach County circuit judge, had warned lawyers not to bring up the subject because it might prejudice the jury. He imposed a $1,000 fine on the attorney who asked the question in court, but that fine was withdrawn Friday.

“Obviously, I’m delighted that the judge vacated the order against me,” said attorney Jan Michael Morris of Boca Raton, Fla.

Promoters Carol Clarke and Keith Rhodes claim in the lawsuit that Richard Williams committed his daughters to play in the proposed match. The sisters testified they alone had that authority.


Fisher leads South African Open: Englishman Ross Fisher shot a 3-under-par 70 to lead by five shots after the second round of the South African Open in George. Fisher was at 8-under 138.

Retief Goosen, a two-time U.S. Open champion, shot a 70 and was second at 143.

College athletics

Missouri State to cut five sports: Missouri State University will eliminate five of its 21 sports at the end of the school year in a cost-cutting move to save $350,000 to $500,000 annually.

Missouri State’s board of governors unanimously approved the proposal by school president Michael Nietzel to cut men’s indoor and outdoor track, men’s cross country and men’s and women’s tennis.

Seattle Times news services