Daniela Bedanova has made it through to the third round of the Eastbourne tennis tournament in southern England, which is a traditional warm-up for Wimbledon. Having knocked out Elena Likhovtseva of Russia in the first round, the Ostrava-born 19-year-old caused an upset by beating number one seed Jelena Dokic of Yugoslavia 6-4 1-6 6-2 in the second on Wednesday. Her father and coach Jan Bedan had this to say after the match.
"It's a good result of course, because Dokic was the top seed. She's ranked eight in the world and last week she won a tournament in Birmingham, which shows she's on form. It's a real D-day as regards our preparations for Wimbledon, and is good for Daja's confidence."
Daniela Bedanova wasn't the only Czech player at Eastbourne. At the age of 45, one of the greatest players in the history of women's tennis, Martina Navratilova, competed in her first singles match since 1994 on Tuesday, beating the Russian Tatiana Panova in the first round. Navratilova's success was short-lived however, as the nine-times Wimbledon champion was then knocked out by the Slovak Daniela Hantuchova.
Having just won ice hockey's Stanley Cup for the first time in his career, goaltender Dominik Hasek is now considering whether to hang up his skates or stay at least another year with the Detroit Red Wings. The indications are that the 37-year-old will stay on; Hasek is reported to have been overwhelmed by the Detroit fans' celebrations after the Stanley Cup win.
One Czech player who is on the move is Jiri Dopita, who has just joined the Edmonton Oilers from the Philadelphia Flyers. Prior to joining Philadelphia a year ago, Dopita was a huge star at Czech club Vsetin and was voted top Czech player of 2000-2001, ahead of Jaromir Jagr.
Prague's Wencelsas Square was the unusual venue for an athletics event on Wednesday. Some of the world's top pole vaulters braved the sweltering heat to take part in the annual Prague Pole event. Jelena Isinbajevova of Russia won the women's event, while the men's was a tie between Italy's Giuseppe Gibilisco and Viktor Chistjakov of Australia.
There has been some controversy over the departure of defender Tomas Hunal from Viktorie Zizkov football club. Allegations have been made in the press that Hunal took a bribe to help throw the crucial last game of the season. Zizkov would have won the league had they not gone down 1:0 to Slavia. Club officials and Hunal himself say he is looking to join a club abroad. Allegations of bribery are quite common in Czech football.
The only Czech taking part in the World Cup, assistant referee Evzen Amler, is performing better that a lot of the pre-tournament favourites. Amler, who is 44 and says this may be his last big tournament, has been named in the elite 16 referees for the rest of the World Cup. The other refs are on their way home.
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