Press Review

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The words "Sme majstri" feature prominently on the front page of Lidove noviny today - "Sme majstri" is Slovak for "We are the champions", and champions they are: Slovakia won the ice hockey World Championships on Saturday, for the first time since Czechoslovakia split into two a decade ago. All the papers carry photos of the team returning to a hero's welcome in the Slovak capital Bratislava.

The words "Sme majstri" feature prominently on the front page of Lidove noviny today - "Sme majstri" is Slovak for "We are the champions", and champions they are: Slovakia won the ice hockey World Championships on Saturday, for the first time since Czechoslovakia split into two a decade ago. All the papers carry photos of the team returning to a hero's welcome in the Slovak capital Bratislava.

"Who would have thought it?" asks Lidove noviny. "Our eastern neighbours are drowning in happiness, while us Czechs are still asking where it went wrong. But Slovakia's success has managed to lift our dark mood, and the celebrations in this country were heartfelt and genuine," says the paper.

"For years we smirked at the Slovaks' attempts to play hockey, mainly because we used to beat them every time," Lidove noviny continues. "We won the title the last three years in a row, now it's their turn. It all proves that this little country - sorry, these two little countries in the heart of Europe - still know how to make ice hockey look like poetry in motion. And doesn't that poem sound good?" says the paper.

Meanwhile, on the front page of Lidove noviny, Prime Minister Milos Zeman's controversial chief adviser Miroslav Slouf plugs his new book, which arrives on the bookshelves today. The story of the former Communist apparatchik who quietly rose through the ranks to become one of Mr Zeman's closest colleagues is a thinly disguised attack on his many political and media foes, says the paper.

One of them is Petra Buzkova, one of the most popular members of the ruling Social Democrats. "Before 1989, she was a functionary in the Socialist Union of Youth," writes Mr Slouf. "She was chosen to attend the Festival of Youth and Students in North Korea. And to be chosen as part of a delegation received personally by the North Korean President, you had to have some credit in the Party," says the man himself lambasted for his links to the former regime.

"Jesus is bigger than a Big Mac" says Mlada fronta Dnes, quoting one of the banners carried through the centre of Prague by around 1,500 Christians at the weekend. Members of six different churches descended on the Czech capital for Saturday's "March for Jesus" - featuring majorettes and rock music of all things.

"The fact that we've got bands playing rock music here is a way of showing people that we're not against modern music," said organiser Lubomir Ondracek. "We want to show people we're not just locked away in our churches praying." The March for Jesus is an annual event, but this year could be the last, says Mlada fronta Dnes, explaining that attendance has fallen somewhat short of expectations.

And finally to Pravo, and news that rats could have been responsible for a gas explosion in a house in the north Moravian city of Ostrava. Several people were injured on Saturday morning after the explosion ripped through the kitchen.

Cooking gas had apparently been leaking from a hole in a pipe leading to a cooker - the gas was ignited when the owner lit a cigarette. "The rat theory has not been ruled out," a spokesman for the local police told the paper, adding that the pipe had been taken away by forensics experts.