Sports News

Yes, sport now, and the fortunes of the Czech Republic's tennis players continue to be mixed.

One of the country's top tennis hopefuls, Jiri Novak, bowed out in the first round of the Stuttgart Master Series, to Spain's Albert Costa, 7-5, 6-7, 7-6.

Better news for the country's women players, as both Kveta Hrdlickova and Denisa Chladkova made it through the first round of the Leipzig tournament. Hrdlickova had a bit of a struggle against France's Anna-Gaelle Sidot, whom she defeated 7-6 6-2, while Chladkova stormed past Israel's Anna Smashnova 6-1, 6-2. Still a long way to go to the final, however, for both ladies.

Staying with tennis, Petr Korda, who was banned from playing in 1998 following a positive drug test, will play in an ATP Challenger event in December, and hopes to make a comeback to the international circuit. Korda, who won the Australian Open in 1998, tested positive for the banned substance nandrolone at Wimbledon in 1998. Despite appealing the decision, he received a ban of one year. Korda, who always claimed he was innocent, says he never knowingly took any banned substance, and has not played since.