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Defending judo champ fails to make weigh-in

The defending champion didn't make the weigh-in, and that gave David Douillet a golden opportunity.

The Frenchman didn't miss his chance.

Douillet, who has won three world titles since 1993, downed Ernesto Perez of Spain for the men's heavyweight judo championship. China's Sun Fuming won the women's heavyweight gold, beating Cuban Estela Rodriguez.

In an early-round match, Douillet's heavy drop of Eric Kreiger sent the Austrian to the hospital with a possible cervical fracture and his neck in a brace. His condition was unknown. In the semifinals, Douillet defeated 1992 silver medalist Naoya Ogawa of Japan.

Defending men's heavyweight champion, David Khakhaleichvili of Georgia, was disqualified for failing to show up for his weigh-in.

He was to face Alexandru Lungu of Romania. But a mixup over the location of the weigh-in and subsequent security delays held up Khakhaleichvili until it was too late, and International Judo Federation officials ordered him to forfeit.

TARNISHED GOLD: The first few hours of the Games were tinged with tragedy for Poland, wiping out that nation's thrill at winning the first medal.

Evgeniusz Pietrasik, an official with the Polish team, collapsed on the field during Friday night's Opening Ceremonies and died at a hospital.

Pietrasik, 48, collapsed after marching into Olympic Stadium with the Polish delegation. A medical examiner said Saturday that Pietrasik died of a heart attack that did not appear to be heat-related.

RUBIN PULLS OUT: Chanda Rubin became the second U.S. tennis player to withdraw when she pulled out because of an injury to her right wrist. She will be replaced by Mary Joe Fernandez. Richey Reneberg, slotted as America's singles player, was picked to play doubles when Todd Martin turned down the spot after missing out on the singles.

SWIM COACH SUED: Margery Tate filed suit against U.S. men's team coach Skip Kenney, 53, and Stanford, where Kenney is the men's coach, for making unwanted sexual advances toward her in 1994 and 1995. Tate was a secretary and data systems worker at Stanford.

HOT, HOT, HOT: Hundreds of buses are shuttling athletes, officials and media among dozens of venues and living accommodations. With temperatures into the mid-90s, air conditioning is a cherished riding companion. But not a must, according to the Atlanta organizing committee.

"We've lost our AC and it's really getting hot," a driver reported over the ACOG communications network. Quickly, there came a reply from transportation headquarters: "ACOG says that air conditioning is a convenience, not a necessity. Continue your route."

No sweat? No chance.

ROOM AT THE INN: Now that the crowds and athletes are here, incoming flights to Atlanta reportedly have plenty of empty seats. Around the city, hotel and motel rooms are available, many in the $75-a-night range closer to downtown, some as inexpensive as $25 around the fringes of the metropolitan area.

Many tickets still are on sale for preliminary events like baseball, volleyball and non-U.S. basketball games. Ticket brokers and scalpers also have said they overpurchased tickets for many high-demand events, such as gymnastics and basketball, so lots of those seats apparently are available for face value or less.

LESS THAN EXPECTED: Jackie Williams had rising expectations upon becoming an Atlanta taxi driver in 1992. "I've been drooling for the Olympics, expecting to make a nice money haul," the native of Savannah said. "I offered my house to ACOG for rental. I'm hacking the streets 18 hours a day. But we've been misled, lied to and now we're getting pushed around by cops. My house and 30,000 others never got rented. Demand wasn't what ACOG said. Now the cops think they're Gestapo, or whatever that Hitler thing was. I'm making less money than in normal Atlanta times. I'm already sick of it. It's Day 2, but I'm ready for the Olympics to get out of my life."

_ HUBERT MIZELL, TIMES WIRES

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