In Sports News this Monday: Czech Republic suffer drubbing at hands of Crosby’s Canada in World Cup of Hockey opener; Czechs take seven medals at Paralympics after late flurry; six-time Paralympic champion cyclist Ježek retires at 41; and Siniaková loses final of Japan Open.
The Czech Republic got off to a rotten start at the World Cup of Hockey, losing 6:0 to Canada in Toronto in their opening game on Saturday. Coach Josef Jandač conceded that his charges had been second best to the Canadians in every department in one of the Czechs’ worst ever results.
The player who inflicted most pain on the Czech Republic was NHL megastar Sidney Crosby. The home side’s captain had a phenomenal game, notching up one goal and two assists while winning six of seven faceoffs in 13 minutes.
Czech forward Jakub Voráček said he and his teammates simply had no answer to Crosby and Co.
“He’s the best player in the world. And it’s the whole line, not just him. Bergeon and Marchand complement him well. It was all happening around our goal and they were out to score as fast as possible. They were hungrier in front of goal. Our goaltender didn’t see the puck. He had it hard, and that’s even with him preventing another five goals.”
The Czechs will have a chance to start restoring their reputation when they take on Team Europe in their second game at the World Cup of Hockey. That takes place on Monday, after the recording of our show.
The Czech Republic picked up seven medals at the 2016 Paralympics, which have just come to an end in Rio de Janeiro. The Czechs finished 51st in the medals tally after a flurry of podium finishes over the final days of the competition, including their only gold, for swimmer Arnošt Petráček in his category in the 50 metre backstroke.
Perhaps the Czech Republic’s best known Paralympian, the cyclist Jiří Ježek, has just retired at the age of 41. Ježek had picked up six Paralympic golds prior to Rio, which he left emptyhanded. The cyclist has suffered extreme health problems over the years and even found himself fighting for his life two years ago.
“It will sound like a cliché but what most motivated me were the people who wished me a rapid recovery. I think that the energy from people all over the world helped me to return to the bike. And it was for them that I came back here in Rio too. Saying farewell at the highest level was always my dream and I’m very glad that it worked out so nicely.”
The young Czech tennis player Kateřina Siniaková will have to wait at least a while longer for her first WTA title. After losing in her first final in Sweden earlier this summer, the 20-year-old won the opening set but eventually lost Sunday’s final of the Japan Women’s Open 6-3 4-6 4-6 to Christina McHale of the United States.
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