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Beckham Waves Off Talk of Leaving English Squad

Friday, March 28, 2008

David Beckham has no intention of waving farewell to the English national team after reaching 100 appearances.

The Los Angeles Galaxy star, who reached the milestone in Paris on Wednesday night, maintains the wave he gave when he walked off during England's 1-0 exhibition loss to France was just an acknowledgment of the standing ovation that even French fans gave him.

"I don't know where the rumors came from, but they weren't from me," Beckham said. "It is 100 not out as far as I am concerned. The wave at the end was not a goodbye, just a thank you."

Beckham was the last England player to walk off the field. At the end of the game, he walked back on, hugged France defender William Gallas, and had a long talk with the Arsenal player before again waving and applauding the fans. . . .

The United States completed plans to play Argentina in an exhibition on June 8 at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.

The Americans won, 3-0, at Poland on Wednesday, giving them consecutive victories in Europe for the first time.

¿ PRO FOOTBALL: The Washington Redskins signed tight end Pete Schmitt. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Schmitt, 6 feet 3 and 252 pounds, signed with the team as an undrafted free agent last May and was released during preseason. He caught 108 passes for 1,231 yards and 14 touchdowns in four seasons at Wisconsin-Whitewater. . . .

Tennessee Titans guard Benji Olson decided to leave college a year early in 1998 because he wasn't sure how long his back would hold up in the NFL. Ten years later, he has announced his retirement.

Olson started 140 of the 152 games he played, not including nine playoff games, which ranks him fourth behind Hall of Famer Bruce Matthews (296), Brad Hopkins (194) and Hall of Famer Mike Munchak (159) with the Titans/Houston Oilers franchise. . . .

Carolina signed guard Toniu Fonoti, giving him another chance in the NFL after his weight soared to nearly 400 pounds. . . .

The Seahawks have signed former Pro Bowl place kicker Olindo Mare to a two-year contract to replace departed free agent Josh Brown. Terms were not disclosed.

¿ COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Heath Benedict, a two-time Little all-American offensive lineman from Newberry College in South Carolina, was found dead on a couch in his home.

Police in Jacksonville, Fla., said no foul play is suspected in the death of the 24-year-old Benedict, a 6-6, 326-pounder who finished his senior season in the fall and left school to train for next month's NFL draft.

¿ SWIMMING: In Sydney, Australian Eamon Sullivan set the 50-meter freestyle world record again, lowering the mark to 21.41 seconds.

Sullivan, competing in the semifinals of the Australian championships at the Sydney International Aquatic Centre, broke the mark of 21.50 seconds, set by France's Alain Bernard at the European championships last weekend in Eindhoven, Netherlands.

Bernard had bested Sullivan's mark of 21.56, set last month.

-- From News Services and Staff Reports

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