In Sports News this Monday: a sobering defeat for the Czechs in the Davis Cup; a strong women’s team prepares to face Spain in the Fed Cup; second in Bulgaria and second in World Cup rankings for snowboard cross’s Eva Samková; and in ice hockey, Sparta Prague seek to overturn the Swedes on home ice in the Champions Hockey league final.
In ice hockey, three newcomers have been nominated for the Czech national squad to take part in the Swedish Hockey Games in Gothenburg. The three include forwards Vladimír Růžička junior of Chomutov and Petr Jelínek of Liberec as well as back Lukeš Klok of Vitkovice. Czech participation starts on February 9 with a match against Sweden. Russia and Finland also take part in the games.
In ice hockey, Sparta has booked a place in the Champions League final after beating Sweden’s Vaxjo Lakers in the return home leg on Wednesday night in front of a record crowd of 12,136. Sparta won 4:0 after already edging Vaxjo in the away match 2:1. Sparta will face another Swedish team, Frolunda, in the final which will be played in the Swedes home town of Gothenburg.
This Tuesday marks 80 years that the first match was held in the country’s first national hockey league. The teams Sparta Prague and Vítkovice faced off on a natural ice rink in Ostrava-Vítkovice. Forward Vilém Kubečka scoring the very first goal but Sparta came back to tie it. For much of the month, the league, now known as the Extraliga, will be celebrating the anniversary.
In Sports News this Monday: Good start to year for Czech women tennis players, with Šafářová, Siniaková and the Plíšková sisters all racking up wins in their first matches of 2017; Dakar Rally has 24 Czech participants; Slavia beat Sparta in annual old boys’ game; and Havlát to make dramatic return for Brno?
In ice hockey, the Czech team lost 2:3 after extra time against Denmark in the World Junior Championships being hosted in Montreal, Canada. The Czechs twice went ahead in the game at the start. The second close loss in a row following defeat against Switzerland leaves the Czech team on five points and it is uncertain whether they will proceed in the tournament.
In ice hockey, the Czech team in the World Junior Championships being hosted in Montreal lost their second game against Switzerland 3:4 after extra time. The Czechs left it late to get back in the match, losing 1:3 in the middle of the third period. Two goals by Filip Chlapík allowed them to draw level and force extra time. The Czechs won the first group encounter against reigning champions, Finland.
In ice hockey, the Czech team won their opening game in the World Junior Championships in Montreal, Canada. They defeated the Finns, the current world champions 2:1. The winning goal came just over a minute before time with Michael Špaček finding the goal. The Czechs had taken the lead in the game through Daniel Krenželok before the Finns drew level. The Czechs have not won a medal in the world juniors since 2005 when they picked up the bronze medal. Last year they were in fifth place. The Czechs next match is against Switzerland.
The Florida Panthers are planning to honour Czech hockey star Jaromír Jágr on January 6 when the club faces Nashville. The evening, according to reports, will be dedicated to the 44-year-old forward who recently surpassed Mark Messier as second on the NHL's all-time points list, led by hockey legend Wayne Gretzky. Jágr said that being second was actually like being first, given that the Gretzky (forever known as "the Great One") was “from another planet”.
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