In Sports News: the Czech Republic’s athletes qualify for the super league of the European Team Championships, after coming first in the competition’s second tier in Budapest; Jimmy Connors tells Czech Radio that Tomáš Berdych can do “damage” at Wimbledon; and a 17-year-old who has made only one Czech league appearance is reported to be on his way to Chelsea in a EUR 6-million deal.
Radek Štepánek has ruled himself out of Wimbledon after sustaining a left knee injury. Štepánek, who is 25th in the ATP rankings and was seeded 22 for Wimbledon, suffered the injury in training earlier this week and following an extensive examination said on Thursday he would have to pull out of Wimbledon as well as the Davis Cup on doctors orders. He had been scheduled to play in a Davis Cup quarter-final against Chile on July 9-11 in Coquimbo, Chile. The Czech has been sidelined from the courts since March due to fatigue.
In Sports News this Monday: Tomáš Berdych wins plaudits after reaching his first ever Grand Slam semi-final at the French Open – Czech pundits are hoping he can maintain that fine form at Wimbledon; doubles specialist Lukáš Dlouhý fails to make it two titles in two years in Paris; and ice hockey goaltender Dominik Hašek joins Spartak Moscow at the age of 45.
Czech tennis player Lukáš Dlouhý and doubles partner Leander Paes of
India have been defeated in the Men’s Doubles final at the French Open.
The duo – who were seeded 3rd and were the defending champions from last
year - lost in straight sets to Daniel Nestor of Canada and Nenad Zimonjic
of Serbia. The final score was 7:5, 6:2. In the match, Nestor and
who were seeded No. 2, converted four break points and never lost serve.
The Czechs’ greatest success at the French Open this year was in the veteran’s category, Women’s Legends, where Czech-born player Martina Navrátilová and partner Jana Novotná won in the women’s doubles category. Recently, Ms Navrátilová, one of the best tennis players of all time, revealed she was fighting breast cancer.
Last year’s doubles champions at the French Open, Leander Paes of India and Czech partner Luáš Dlouhý (seeded 3rd) will have a chance to defend their title later on Saturday against Daniel Nestor of Canada and Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia (seeded 2nd). In their semi-final earlier, Paes and Dlouhý made short work of opponents Julian Knowle of Austria and Andy Ram of Israel in straight sets. The match took just 75 minutes and final score was 6:4, 6:2.
Czech tennis players Martina Navratilová and partner Jana Novotná have won the women’s doubles title at the French Open in the veterans’ category known as “Women’s Legends”. The 53-year-old Navratilová and 41-year-old Novotná beat the French-Croatian duo of Majoli/Tauziat by a score of 6:4; 6:2. Not long ago Navratilová, who displayed excellent form, revealed to the media she was fighting breast cancer. She is scheduled to play with Novotná again against the younger duo of Martina Hingis and Anna Kurnikova at Wimbledon.
Sweden's Robin Soderling defeated Czech Tomas Berdych 6-3 3-6 5-7 6-3 6-3 on Friday to reach the final of the French Open for the second year in a row. Soderling broke serve in the sixth game of the first set when Berdych double-faulted and went on to win the opener. The Czech, playing in his first grand slam semi-final recovered, winning the second and third sets. He had a chance to break the Soderling serve right at the start of the fourth but the Swede pummelled down an ace. Soderling then struck in the sixth game, breaking when 15th seed Berdych netted a backhand, to set up a deciding set.
Fourth seeds Czech Lukáš Dlouhý and India’s Leander Paes reached their second Grand Slam final of the season after defeating third seeded Austrian-Israeli duo Julian Knowle, Andy Ram 6:4, 6:2 in the French Open semi-finals on Thursday. In Saturday’s finals, the Czech-Indian duo will face second seed Daniel Nestor from Canada and Serbia’s Nenad Zimonjich.
Czech tennis player Tomáš Berdych says reaching his first ever Grand Slam semi-final is incredible, but that his next match is now the most important thing. The 24-year-old made it to the last four at the French Open in Paris after thrashing Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny 6-3 6-1 6-2 in less than two hours on Tuesday evening. His opponent said that he was not given a chance to play. Berdych will now face Sweden’s Robin Soderling, who knocked out Roger Federer, for a place in the final. The Swede has won four of the pair’s previous seven matches, though Berdych beat Soderling when the two met earlier this year.
In tennis, the Czech Republic will take on Slovakia in the opening game of next year’s women’s team tennis competition, the FedCup. The top World Group tie will take place in Slovakia on February 5 and 6. The Czech Republic has a 3:0 lead in the previous confrontations between the teams. This year, the Czech Republic got to the semi-finals of the event before being beaten 0:5 by finalist, Italy.
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