In Sports News this Monday: Czech women reach fifth Fed Cup final in six years after beating Swiss in Lucerne; Sparta boss Ščasný “concedes” title race to Plzeň with five rounds to go; Liberec and Sparta tied 1:1 in Extraliga playoffs final; and Chodov become Czech floorball champions in front of record crowd.
The Czech women’s tennis team have reached the final of the Fed Cup for the fifth time in six years after edging Switzerland 3:2 on matches in Lucerne at the weekend. Sunday started with Karolína Plíšková easing past Timea Bacsinszky 6-4 6-2 to put the Czechs 2:1 up. However, world no. 129 Viktorija Golubic produced a comeback to beat Barbora Strýcová 3-6 7-6 6-1 and bring the tie down to the doubles. In that final rubber Plíšková and Lucie Hradecká overcame Golubic and Martina Hingis 6-2 6-2 in exactly one hour to secure an eighth consecutive tie victory for the Czechs.
Speaking to the Fed Cup website afterwards, Plíšková said the team’s vast experience had stood them in good stead.
“Definitely it was an advantage for us that we’ve played so many times. Both Lucie and I had played deciding doubles already and we knew how difficult it is. I’m just really happy that we made it.”
The Czech Republic will face France in France in the final in mid-November.
Viktoria Plzeň have their defence of the Czech football league title more or less wrapped up with five rounds to go. So says Zdeněk Ščasný, manager of the West Bohemians’ closest challengers Sparta Prague, after the latter dropped two points in a 2:2 draw at Bohemians 1905 at the weekend. The Prague side may have played one fewer match but they are now a full 11 points behind Plzeň, who beat Brno 2:1 on Saturday for their 14th successive victory.
Sparta are due to play their game in hand against Dukla on Wednesday. But Ščasný says the result is now unlikely to impact the title race.
“I can’t call it a complication. In fact, you could say it’s decided. Naturally we had a great desire to win here and to win our game in hand at Dukla and then beat Plzeň at home. We still aim to win the latter two games. But with regard to the title, it appears to be lost.”
In the finals of the Extraliga playoffs regular season winners Liberec and runners-up Sparta Prague are tied 1:1 after the opening two games at the latter’s arena. The hosts lost the opener 1:3 on Thursday before winning game two the following evening 4:2. The series moves to Prague on Monday evening, after the recording of this programme.
Chodov have become Czech floorball champions, breaking a 22-year monopoly held by Střešovice and Vítkovice to become the third ever winners of the competition. Over 12,000 fans turned out for the weekend’s final at Prague’s O2 Arena, setting a new record.