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Photo Caption: Basket Brno has a chance to finish its best season in third place. GEOSAN Kolín is on tap for Friday and Sunday. Watch on TVcom.cz. Photo Credit: Jan Russnák.

Brno, May 19 (BD) — Brno loses its representation in the Fortuna Liga and Draci face Ostrava in important baseball series.

MEN’S FOOTBALL

Zbrojovka Fails To Stay in Top League

The agonizing end has come. Fans may have held out hope that maybe, just maybe, FC Zbrojovka would live up to the potential that its individual players have shown. But, like so many times before, the second biggest city in the Czech Republic failed to produce a team worthy of being in the top football league.

FC Zbrojovka will return to the second league next season, which should start in July.  

Whatever the myriad reasons — bad off-field management, bad on-field coaching, lack of motivation, lack of talent, lack of stability, lack of vision, lack of support — the fact is that Brno has repeatedly been embarrassed by its team. The championship season of 1977-78 is more than four decades ago. Za Lužánkami stadium, despite the constant references in emotional chants by the fans, is rotting proof of a city government that does not care for its football.

Last Friday night, on national television, Zbrojovka played at Liberec. They fought valiantly but gave up a goal in the second half. With three minutes left in extra time, Antonin Rusek, a national team player, scored to equalize the score. Unfortunately, it was too little too late.

FC Teplice beat České Budějovice, 2-0, on Sunday to seal Brno’s fate, though officially there are two games left for Zbrojovka (4-11-17, 23 points), which hosts last-place Opava (3-8-21, 17) on Sunday at 5 p.m. and finishes the season at second-place Sparta Praha (21-5-6, 68) on May 29 at 5 p.m.

Zbrojovka was in the second league in for the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons. They finished second in the second league last year, but got promoted along with league-winner FK Pardubice when the leagues were restructured in response to the disruptions caused by the pandemic. Brno is among three teams that will move down to even out the two leagues at 16-teams again.  

For updated information and the schedule for FC Zbrojovka Brno games, go to the league website at https://www.fortunaliga.cz/. The team website is at https://fczbrno.cz/. Use Google Chrome, right-click anywhere on the page and select “Translate to English”.

MEN’S BASKETBALL

Basket Brno Plays For Third Place

Basket Brno has had the best season in its decade-and-a-half existence. The team got past USK Praha in the quarterfinals, got swept by perennial Czech basketball champion ERA Basketball Nymburk in the semifinals and, on Friday at home against GEOSAN Kolín, they will begin the consolation series to try to finish with the bronze medal.

ERA Basketball Nymburk rolled through the semifinal series, winning 85-64, 99-74 and 73-114 in a series that had a dramatic back-and-forth between the head coaches that played out in post-game comments.

Brno was without three important players: Viktor Půlpán, Šimon Puršel, and pivot Jakub Krakovič. That allowed several young players to get experience.

Nymburk reached the finals for the 18th time in a row. They now play BK Opava.

“I guess we can agree that we lacked experience and also physicality on the rebound,” said Lubomír Růžička, the head coach of Basket Brno. “Congratulations to Nymburk. We are happy to be among the top four teams in the league and we will do everything we can to win a bronze medal for Brno. “

Game 1 on Friday is at 5 p.m. Game 2 will be in Kolín on Sunday at 5:45 p.m. Watch the games on Tvcom.cz.

For updated information and the schedule for Basket Brno games, go to the league website at https://www.nbl.cz/. The team website is: https://basketbrno.cz/ Use Google Chrome, right-click anywhere on the page and select “Translate to English”.

BASEBALL

Draci Face Arrows in Rivalry Series

The Brno Draci swept the Třebíč Nuclears in a three-game series last weekend and they will take on the top-dog Ostrava Arrows this weekend, playing in Ostrava on Friday and Saturday, with the rubber game in South Brno on Sunday at 1 p.m.

Arrows Ostrava (14-4) has a game-and-a-half lead in the standings over Sokol Hluboká (12-5) and a one-game lead over Eagles Praha (12-6).

The defending-champion Draci are 10-5 with half of the first part of the regular season in the books.

Cardion Hroši Brno (10-8) just finished with Ostava, losing both ends of a double-header on Saturday, then taking the third game. The Hroši have Sokol Hluboká this weekend.

For updated information and the schedule for Czech extraliga baseball, go to the league website at https://extraliga.baseball.cz/. Use Google Chrome, right-click anywhere on the page and select “Translate to English”.

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