In Sports News this Monday: Czechs lose with pride to France in the Davis Cup; Tomáš Berdych and Karolína Plíšková drop out of Olympics; David Limberský hangs up boots for the national squad; and Roman Kreuziger is well positioned to attack lead in the second week of Tour de France.
We begin with tennis and the Czech Davis Cup loss 1:3 to France on home ground. In the decisive singles match Jiří Veselý was beaten by top 10 world ranked opponent Jo Wilfried Tsonga in a tight four setter after taking the first set and going to a tie break on the second. The Czech team, missing star player Tomáš Berdych, also started the match brightly on Friday with Lukáš Rosol beating Tsonga in five sets. Czech non-playing captain Jaroslav Navrátil took consolation from the fighting performance that was put up against the fancied French.
“I think that we did everything that we could. We were unfortunately not able to pull off a win. We have to look forward to next year and if things continue like they did here for the past week and Tomáš rejoins the team, then we can look forward to success.”
And we stay with tennis and news that both Tomáš Berdych and Karolína Plíšková have announced that they will not be going to Rio and the Olympics because of fears of the mosquito borne Zika virus. The two medal hopes in singles were also due to take part in the doubles and that has forced a hurried shake-up of partnerships. Radek Štěpánek is now due to play the men’s doubles with Lukáš Rosol and Lucie Šafářová with Barbora Strýcová.
We turn now to football and news that another Czech veteran, David Limberský, has called time on his international career for his country. The 32-year-old defender for Viktoria Plzeň featured in two of the three games of the Czechs’ short lived Euro 2016 campaign. He has been a stable feature of the national team since the previous European Championships in 2012. Limberský said he had already been thinking about making the announcement before the championships but found a fresh lease of life at the end of the last season.
In cycling, Czech Roman Kreuziger is well poised to attack a top 10 place after the first week of the Tour de France. Kreuziger is in 11th place after 15 stages of the competition with a 5 minute and 24 second gap on current leader, Brit Chris Froome. But the Czech trails the four cyclists in front of him by less than a minute. Kreuziger is credited with keep alive his tour hopes in the blustery conditions on the 14th and 15th stages while avoiding the pack and the accidents that have featured in the tour so far.
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