Kvitová continues great season with fifth title of 2018 in Birmingham; Berdych drops of out of Wimbledon; Czech ice hockey world split on new jerseys; and rancour as Kreuziger drops out of national cycling race.
Petra Kvitová is well and truly back. The Czech two-time Wimbledon winner did well to return from a horrific hand injury in 2017. However, this season Kvitová has regained the kind of form that made her a star in the first place.
This was confirmed on Sunday when the 28-year-old beat Magdaléna Rybáriková of Slovakia 4-6 6-1 6-2 for her fifth title of the season – and the 25th of her career – at the Birmingham Classic in the UK.
Kvitová, ranked eighth in the world, had this to say after her second title in a row in Birmingham.
“For me it’s a surprise, if anything. It would never have occurred to me even in my dreams that things could have gone so well. Things are going very positively and I felt very good throughout the tournament.”
Berdych, who has slipped to 23rd in the world from a career high fourth three years ago, reached the final at the All England Club in 2010 and has been a semi-finalist there for the last two years.
The overwhelming majority of respondents in a poll by the iDnes.cz news site said they did not like the national team’s new look.
As for those who will be wearing it, the Czech player of the season David Pastrňák said he didn’t understand the new strip and goaltender Ondřej Pavelec described it as a disgrace.
In contrast Martin Nečas, who was part of the Czech squad at this year’s world championships, said the jerseys were much nicer than the previous ones.
Now retired ice hockey great Patrik Eliáš, who from next season will be assistant coach of the Czech under 20s, is also for the change. He said the lion was a national symbol and it was a great idea to use it as the symbol of the Czech team.
The mass start event at the Czech and Slovak Cycling Championships in Plzeň ended in rancour on Sunday when Roman Kreuziger dropped out. He said he had been disgusted by the tactics of the Czech team Elkov Author. The race was won by Slovakia’s Peter Sagan.