As the Olympic torch continues its way across the world, surrounded by a coterie of track-suited Chinese security guards, many are calling for a boycott of the opening ceremony of the Games in Beijing in the light of human rights abuses in Tibet. Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg has become the latest Czech politician to add his voice to those calls.
Soccer star Petr Čech is the best paid Czech sports person ever, and is surely the most successful Czech of his generation. But the Chelsea goalkeeper is no stranger to bad luck either. After a life-threatening head injury last season, Čech is now in the wars again – he needed 50 stitches and had to undergo plastic surgery after a collision in training left him with a deep cut in his face.
In Sport News this Monday: the final series playoffs in the Czech ice hockey Extraliga get off to an exciting start, with surprise package Karlovy Vary beating Slavia in Prague in the opening game; goaltender Dominik Hašek (43) wins his third trophy for the fewest goals conceded in the regular season; the Czech men’s team travel to Moscow for a Davis Cup quarter-finals clash; Sparta edge ahead in the Czech football league, with Slavia due to play on Monday evening; and the Czech national team doctor says Tomáš Rosický has come to terms with the
In this week’s Mailbox we find out the identity of March’s mystery man and announce the four winners who will receive small gifts for their correct answers. Listeners quoted: Swopan Chakroborty, Helmut Matt, Jaromír Hauzar, Li Xuewei, Constatnin Liviu Viorel, Pier Carlo Acchino, Jayanta Chakrabarty, Ian Morrison, Colin Law, Charles Konecny, David Eldridge.
Observers are calling it one of the worst incidents of hooliganism by fans in Czech football history, a rampage that marred what should have been a classic contest between Slavia and Sparta, Prague’s most famous football clubs. The match itself ended in a 1:1 draw, changing little the top of the table - but it was vandalism and violence by radical fans, including the tearing out of hundreds of seats at Strahov’s Evžen Rosický Stadium, that captured all of the headlines. Damages have totalled at least half a million crowns.
In Sports News this Monday: Czech tennis players Tomáš Berdych and Radek Štěpánek are through to the fourth round, though Lucie Šafářová has been knocked out; Czech football captain Tomáš Rosický has been speaking about the mysterious injury that has kept him out since January; Bundesliga star David Jarolím is sent off after grabbing an opponent by the genitals; and the first 11 runners to cross the finish line in the Prague Half Marathon are all from Kenya.
While the Olympics in Beijing are still over four months away, the recent unrest in Tibet has brought the issue of how the world should deal with China – and the games – to the fore. The Czech minister of education and sport is set to boycott the Beijing Olympics, while the prime minister has just issued a statement saying he will let the cabinet decide whether he should attend. With the president staying home for health reasons, will any senior Czech politicians actually go to Beijing? And what would it mean if they don't?
In Sports News today: Tomáš Verner fails to deliver at World Figure Skating Championship; Liberec has made dramatic comeback against Slavia in the ice-hockey Extraliga play-offs; Czechs are to meet Scotland in a friendly in May; Czech football coach Karel Bruckner has said he will resign after Euro 2008; Pavel Nedvěd is considering returning to the national football team.
Lukáš Bauer, the Czech Republic's newest sporting hero, arrived in Prague on Tuesday, proudly in possession of the Crystal Globe for winning cross country skiing's season-long World Cup. Bauer, who is 30, is the first Czech ever to win the prestigious trophy. He actually had the World Cup in the bag two weeks ago, but had to wait for the last race of the season to get his hands on the Crystal Globe. I spoke to Lukas Bauer about the reaction to his success here in the Czech Republic.