In Sports News this week: no medals so far for the Czechs at Rio but they have pulled off some surprises and comebacks on the tennis courts. In football, both league title holders Viktoria Plzeň and Sparta Prague make a stuttering start to the season. And Czechs made an impression at the Moto Surf Wold Cup in Prague.
And we begin with the Olympics and a stunning Czech contribution to a day of surprises in the tennis tournament. Doubles pairing Lucie Šafářová and Barbora Stýcová eliminated doubles favourites Serena and Venus Williams in straight sets in the first round of the competition. They dispatched the three times US Olympics winners 6:3, 6:4. The Venus sisters started the tie brightly taking a two-love lead in the first set but things then started going awry, especially with their serve.
And the London silver medal pairing of Andrea Hlaváčková and Lucie Hradecká had a more problematic start to the games going 0:4 against Ukrainians Olga Savchuk and Elina Svitolinova in their opener before pulling back and winning the tie break and eventually the match 7:6; 1:6; 6:4.
In the singles, Petra Kvitova convincingly got her first match behind her with a 6:1, 6:2, win against Hungary’s Timea Babos.
And the final preparations of Czech London gold medal winning rower Mirka
Topinková-Knapková at Rio have been eventful to say the least. The
35-year-old had to be fished out of the water by rescuers after the wind
whipped up high waves on the Rio lagoon and within seconds flooded her
craft. The boat sustained some damage.
In football, league champions Viktoria Plzeň were held to a surprise 1:1 draw in their second encounter of the season at home against Bohemians 1905. The home team took an early lead in the 10th minute but failed to build on it and the visitors pulled back before half time.
Manager Roman Pivarník regretted after the game that the league title
holders failed to sustain their performance after a bright start and he
said it was not just the defence that was at fault:
“There were mistakes a bit everywhere not just in defence. We started the game well and got an early goal. We were very comfortable and active in the first half, even though our opponents equalized, and we should have kept up that performance.”
There might be some consolation from the fact that Sparta Prague could only manage a goalless draw away against Teplice. But there is no mistaking that Plzeň, who in a week face Bulgarian club Ludogorets for the first leg play off to get into the Champions League, are not looking their best at the moment.
And finally, over the last weekend Prague has just hosted another in the series of Moto Surf World Cup events. Just to explain, Moto Surf, sometime known as jet surfing, is surfboards with motors, a sport invented by Czechs and at which Czechs dominate. The men’s final was won by Lukáš Zahorský ahead of Jan Carouz. Zahorský also tops the points table half way through the 2016 season. Czech Aneta Šacherová won the women’s event.
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