Sports News

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By Peter Smith

Yes, it's the sport and let's begin with the weekend's football action here in the Czech Republic. In Friday night's televised Gambrinus League match, Slavia Prague fell to a surprise defeat 3-1 at the early league-leaders Jablonec. The hosts took the lead in the 22nd minute with a marvelous individual effort from their 19-year-old left-back Josef Lastovka. The Slovak Martin Petras headed a second nine minutes later, but Slavia pulled one back shortly after half-time when Ludek Zelenka set up Tomas Dosek to fire past new Jablonec keeper Petr Kouba.

Slavia - who finished the match with nine men after two red cards - were well and truly buried eleven minutes before time when Milan Barteska ran from the halfway line to bury a shot past Slavia keeper Radek Cerny. Slavia boss Josef Pesice described the performance as 'not worthy of the name of Slavia' - very worrying in light if the club's vital Champions League qualifyer against Greek team Panathiniakos on Wednesday evening.

In other results, Sparta bounced back from their shock opening day defeat at Blsany to thrash newly-promoted Hradec Kralove 5-0. Radim Holub and Petr Papousek each grabbed a brace for the champions with Josef Obajdin netting the other. After two matches, three teams are on maximum points with Jablonec at the top - Banik Ostrava, Bohemians and Slovan Liberec.

Away from football and the World Athletics Championships which got underway in Edmonton, Canada, at the weekend. There was early success for the Czech javelin thrower Nikola Tomechova - she stole a march on her rivals with a throw of 65.71 metres - a new national record - and leads the list of Monday's finalists.

Tennis and after the encouraging performances of Daja Bedanova in the WTA San Diego event last week, another Czech has reason to celebrate. Andriana Gersi destroyed her 17-year-old Swiss opponent Marie-Galiane Mikaelien 6-4 6-1 to win the final of the Basel Open on Sunday. It was 25-year-old Gersi's first tour title.

Also, Daja Bedanova came through the first round of the $565,000 Los Angeles Women's classic, beating Janet Lee of Taipei 6-4 3-6 6-2.