Sports News

Dominik Hasek

Ice hockey legend Dominik Hasek retires after a long and successful career. Mixed fortunes for Czech players at Wimbledon, and football coach Zdenek Zeman has won an award for his campaign against drugs in the game. All those stories and more are in Sports News.

Hasek announces retirement from ice hockey after glittering career

Dominik Hasek, photo: CTK
After a couple of weeks of intense speculation it is now official - Dominik Hasek, one of the greatest Czech ice hockey players of all time,has announced his retirement. The goaltender is quitting hockey just two weeks after winning the Stanley Cup for the first time, completing a hugely successful career. Hasek said that after 21 years in professional hockey at the highest level he just did not have the fire to continue. Among those to pay tribute to "the Dominator" was former Czech international coach Josef Augusta, who said Hasek was the best goalie of the modern era, and that the Czech Republic would be waiting a long time for somebody to replace him.

And there has been some speculation in the Czech press that Hasek may line up next season for the club where he started his career, Pardubice. An agent for Hasek told the daily Sport that anything was possible. If Hasek were to rejoin Pardubice - after an interval of 13 years - it would be one of the biggest sensations ever in the Czech Extraliga.

Mixed fortunes for Czech players at Wimbledon

Czech tennis players have been having a mixed time of it at Wimbledon. On Wednesday the 12th seed Jiri Novak was knocked out by grass-court specialist Wayne Arthurs of Australia 6-3 7-6 6-3. What's more Novak blew two set points in the second set on his way out of the tournament. Afterwards Novak's coach Jan Kukal said the player was simply mentally exhausted. Daniela "Daja" Bedanova had more success; the nineteen-year-old has reached the third round at Wimbledon for the first time in her career, with a two-set win over Selma Sfar of Tunisia. Meanwhile, Czech players Radek Stepanek, Jan Vacek and Denisa Chladkova are all looking forward to second round matches.

Czech linesman praised by refereeing commission at World Cup

The only Czech at football's World Cup, linesman Evsen Amler, got through the Germany-Korea semi-final without controversy, and was praised by the refereeing commission afterwards. Refs, and linesmen in particular, have come in for a great deal of criticism during the World Cup, but Amler has completed his last major tournament without attracting any flak.

Italy-based Czech coach wins award

The Italy-based Czech football coach Zdenek Zeman has been awarded an honorary diploma by the UNESCO International Fair Play committee. Zeman, who has lived in Italy since 1969 and managed several clubs in the country including Lazio and AS Roma, received the award for his campaign against drug-taking in football. He started a big debate on the issue in 1998 when he said publicly that Italian football was rife with performance enhancing drugs.