In Sports News: the Czech Under 20 team is knocked out of the ice hockey World Championships; Jiri Novak is taking January off and misses the Australian Open, while Martina Navratilova says she is still "damn good"; Sigma Olomouc goalkeeper Martin Vaniak becomes unofficial world champion in saving free kicks.
Under 20s knocked out in semi-finals of hockey World Championships
The Czech Republic's Under 20 ice hockey team has been knocked out in the semi-finals of the World Championships in Grand Forks, USA, after losing 3:1 to tournament favourites Canada. The Czechs were poor in offense for the first two periods, finally getting their only goal in the 44th minute through Rostislav Olesz, who has scored six goals in five games. He and his team-mates face either the US or Russia in a game to decide third place.
Znojmo lose first game since departure of Elias for Russia
Novak "not retiring" but sits out Australian Open
The Czech tennis number one, Jiri Novak, says he is not planning to retire soon but he has announced he will take part in just a limited number of tournaments this year. Novak is taking the whole month of January off, and will miss the first Grand Slam tournament of the year, the Australian Open. Three years ago he reached the semi-finals in Melbourne, the biggest Grand Slam success of his 11-year career.
Navratilova continues in doubles, may try singles this season
Mixed time for Czech Welsch at NBA's Boston Celtics
Jiri Welsch, the only Czech player in basketball's NBA, is having an up and down time at the Boston Celtics. In the first game of the New Year, Welsch was Celtics second top scorer with 14 points, though his team lost 100:88 at Detroit. In the Celtics' previous game Welsch scored 10 points in 20 minutes as they beat Washington, ending a run of three defeats in a row.
Vaniak "world champion" in saving free kicks
Sparta play Slavia in traditional New Year's Eve old boys derbies
Sparta and Slavia Prague, the biggest rivals in Czech football, face each other in old boys derbies every New Year's Eve and this year was no exception; in the over 35s category Slavia won 7:4, while the over 50s drew 4:4.