The news of the recent doping scandal at the legendary Tour de France has received so much coverage that even those with no interest in sport could hardly fail to notice. As a result of the scandals, some of the main partners of the legendary cycling race have begun considering pulling out of sponsorship. One of them is the biggest Czech carmaker Skoda Auto, which has been the tour's main official partner for the past four years.
In Sports News: the Czech Republic lose in the final of the Under-20 World Cup, though they certainly will not be returning home in disgrace; tennis ace Radek Stepanek completes his comeback from injury with a win in the Los Angeles Classic - only the second title of his career; climber Libor Uher becomes only the second Czech to conquer K2; ice hockey star Petr Nedved leaves the NHL after 15 years for Sparta Prague; and is footballer Radoslav Kovac bound for the big league and Inter Milan?
The Czech Under-20 football team are preparing for what could be one of the nights of their lives; if they overcome Austria, they will be in the final of the Under-20 World Cup in Canada, something few could have predicted before it began. Already the youngsters have gone further in the competition than any previous Czech team. What's more, the junior World Cup is a great shop window, and several of the Czech youngsters have reportedly been attracting the interest of European clubs.
In Sports News: the Czech Republic's footballers reach the semi-finals at the Under 20s World Cup for the first time ever; Patrik Berger surprises many by expressing a wish to return to international football after a six-year break; the Czech women's tennis team miss out on a place in the Fed Cup's elite after losing 4:1 away to Spain; and rower Ondrej Synek says his latest success is just a warm up for the Rowing World Championships next month.
In Sports News: Tomas Berdych climbs back into the top ten in tennis's world rankings after reaching the quarter-finals at Wimbledon; Nicole Vaidisova says goodbye to the All England Club at the same stage, but has more to regret; football goalkeeper Petr Cech is set to wear a special protective helmet for another season; Vladimir Smicer scores on his 'debut' for Slavia Prague; and Dominik Hasek receives a better contract from Detroit Red Wings, while Robert Lang leaves the NHL club.
Robin Ujfalusi is a humanitarian aid worker, football-lover, and now author. I met him in a cafe the other day to ask him about his new book "Jak se hraje fotbal v Africe" or, "How football is played in Africa". The book was written during a three month stay in Nairobi, where Robin was working with communities, and more specifically, their football teams. Ujfalusi comes from a footballing background, with his cousin, Tomas, playing for the Czech national team. In "How football is played in Africa", Tomas Ujfalusi makes a guest appearance, writing
Czechs take three golds at the kayak slalom World Cup in Prague; goaltender Dominik Hasek is close to singing a new contract with Detroit Red Wings while his brother, footballer Martin Hasek, is retiring. Midfielder Vladimir Smicer is likely to sign with Slavia Prague as well as start his new TV career. Cyclist Pavel Padrnos will not be taking part in this year's Tour de France, while in athletics, Katerina Badurova overcomes the Czech pole vault record at the Golden Spike in Ostrava.
Lukas Pesek sees disappointing 18th place in 125cc British Grand Prix; in ice hockey, 19 year-old Jakub Voracek was the first European chosen in this year's NHL draft; goalie Tomas Vokoun is headed for Florida after 9 years with the Nashville Predators; and, English jockey Paul Eddery has won the 87th Czech Derby at Prague's famous Chuchle racetrack.
On this day (20/6/1976) thirty one years ago, Czech footballer Antonin Panenka wrote himself into football history books by scoring the decisive goal for Czechoslovakia in a penalty shoot-out after the final of the European Cup of Nations against West Germany ended in a draw. This goal was undoubtedly one of the greatest moments in Czech sporting history and it made Panenka a household name. In this edition of Czechs Today, we look at the career of this great footballer and recall his stunning penalty kick, which sealed Czechoslovakia's only ever