Sports News

Jagr against Ruthemann, photo CTK

In a sport-packed weekend the Czech Republic's ice hockey team have won their first two games at the World Championships in Sweden, the race for the football league championship has narrowed to just three points as Liberec slip up and racing driver Tomas Enge has had his best result of the season. Hear all those stories and more in today's Sports News.

Jagr against Ruthemann,  photo CTK
In a sport-packed weekend the biggest story has to be the Czech ice hockey team's opening games at the World Championships in Sweden. The defending champions got off to a flying start, beating Switzerland 5:0 on Friday evening, a game marred only by injury for first choice goaltender Milan Hnilicka, ruling him out for the next two matches at least.

Sunday produced a surprisingly tough match against underdogs Japan, which the Czechs eventually won 5:3. Japan, who were crushed 9:2 by Germany in their opening group A game, took a surprise first-minute lead through captain Ryan Kuwabara. From then on it was a close-run thing, but two goals from captain Jaromir Jagr helped steer the Czechs to victory; Jagr was voted man of the match. The Czech Republic play group A leaders Germany on Monday night - the winners will win the group.

Match against Japan,  photo CTK
There is great interest in the ice hockey World Championships here in the Czech Republic. Don't forget the Czechs have - incredibly - won the last three years in a row.

Moving on to football and the title race took a twist on Friday, when league leaders Liberec lost 2:0 away to Teplice, offering some hope to second place Viktoria Zizkov who went into the weekend six points behind with just three games to go. Zizkov seized the opportunity to close the gap, beating Drnovice 2:1 away on Sunday. So - with two games left - Liberec are just three points ahead, which should make for a very exciting climax to the season.

The German Bundesliga is even closer than the Czech league with only one game to go. Two Czech internationals - Tomas Rosicky and Jan Koller - scored for Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, helping them beat Hamburg SV 4:3. If Borussia wins next weekend, the title will be theirs.

Motor racing now, and the Czech Formula 3000 driver Tomas Enge has come second in the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona. It was the best result of the season so far for Enge, who is now fifth overall in the points table. Last season Enge, who races for the Arden International team, became the first Czech ever to take part in Formula 1 racing.

We close with tennis and the news that the Czech Republic has lost 3:2 to Croatia in the Fed Cup, which is the top team competition in women's tennis. Things were all square at two matches all after the singles games; Sunday's doubles encounter was the decider and saw Iveta Benesova and Eva Birnerova beaten 1:6 2:6 by the Croatian pair of Iva Majoli and Jelena Kostanic.