For all intents and purposes, the Zbrojovka season ended in Uherske Hradiste, when they lost to 1FC Slovacko and heard from their unhappy fans. Photo credit: Bruno Zalubil

Brno, May 23 (BD) — Scoreless weekend for Sígrs, Alligators; Technika win; Lokomotiva plays Liberec to save season; and the Brno sports schedule.

MEN’S FOOTBALL

Zbrojovka Fails

When many look back on the 2017-18 HET Liga season, the enduring image will be the team, exhausted after losing at 1FC Slovacko on April 14, standing in front of their travelling fans and taking waves of abuse.

It was an emotional outpouring, including taunts, cries for removing their jerseys in disgrace, beer and a lot of vulgarity. For 20 minutes, captain Dušan Melichárek kept the team in front of the fans. The players bravely took it all in. There were still six games remaining in the season. All was not yet lost.

Five games later, on Saturday, after a scoreless tie at home against Jihlava, all is now, indeed, lost. FC Zbrojovka Brno will be relegated to the second league because it will finish dead last in the HET Liga.

This time, when the Jihlava game ended, the players were understandably hesitant to approach the fan section at Sbrska. It appeared that several were prepared to simply retreat into the locker room. Rather, the team coalesced and took a few steps toward the fan section. Most fans, who had been vocal in their encouragement throughout the game, were silent. Then, a smattering of claps were heard. The players briefly acknowledged the support with claps of their own and walked off the field, beaten.

Zbrojovka needed to win its final game and a tie between Banik Ostrava and FC Karvina, which happened. Instead, they return to the second league, where they played one season in 2011-12.

Jihlava did not give us a chance,” said Zbrojovka head coach Roman Pivarník. “It is a pity that we could not manage the match, because we would still have had something to play for in the last round.”

Zbrojovka, the team from the second biggest city in the country, will no longer play Sparta and Slavia and Plzen; now they will play FC Sellier & Bellot Vlašim and FK Baník Sokolov and FK Varnsdorf. Some die-hard fans will stay, renewing their season tickets and travelling to the new locations for road games, but most fans will find better things to do on weekends as they wait for the team to return to the more respectable top league.

If we take the long view, perhaps there are some positives:

  • The Brno area has a large population and, traditionally, decent young teams and players. Zbrojovka will be unlikely to pay for international imports. Expect younger players to get game time and experience.
  • There is momentum for the city to build a new football stadium to replace the long revered former home at Boby Centrum. Brno needs a place a place host international football games and Zbrojovka would benefit as the regular tenant. It would, therefore, behoove the team to get back into the first league as quickly as possible.
  • Being a big fish in a small pond can be psychologically positive. In some ways the second-league campaign of 2011-12 was a boost for the organization. (Eventually, that is. Zbrojovka lost its first two games and tied its next two for a measly two points in four games. Through 14 games they had won only twice. Then, something happened: the team reeled out seven consecutive victories; had a 13-game unbeaten streak; and went 11-4-1 in the final 16 games, with several exciting finishes. Their loss was to Jihlava, which topped the second league and returned with Zbrojovka to the top-level competition.)
  • The last time Brno was in the second league, the stadium served Cerna Hora beer instead of Gambrinus. That is not insignificant.

When Zbrojovka was relegated after the 2010-11 season, it finished 15th with a record of 7-3-20 for 24 points. This season, they are 6-6-17 with 24 points with one more game to play.

The five seasons that the team was in the top league were not remarkable:

2016-17 — 11th place: 6-14-10 for 32 points.

2015-16 — 6th place: 14-5-11 for 47 points.

2014-15 — 14th place: 9-6-15 for 33 points.

2013-14 — Ninth place: 10-7-13 for 37 points.

2012-13 — 13th place: 9-5-16 for 32 points.

Zbrojovka plays its final game of the season at Banik Ostrava on Saturday at 4 p.m.

AMERICAN FOOTBALL

Brno Teams Outscored 85-0

Both Brno American Football teams were shutout on the road on Sunday: the Aquaponik Ostrava Steelers beat the Brno Sígrs, 35-0, and the Prague Black Panthers beat the Brno Alligators, 50-0.

Both teams have a bye week to rest and retool.

On Saturday, June 2, the Brno Sígrs (3-3) host the Prague Lions at Ragby Bystrc at 3 p.m. The following day, the Brno Alligators (2-4) will take the same field against the Aquaponik Ostrava Steelers at 2 p.m.

BASEBALL

Technika Win, Draci Still on Top

On Friday, Technika Brno blanked last-place Olympia Blansko, 6-0, for its second win of the season. On Saturday, however, Blansko got the better of Technika, winning 4-11.

Technika is now 2-15, just a notch above Blansko, which is 1-16.

Four of its next five games are against Brno teams: at Cardion Hroši Brno on Friday at 4 p.m.; (at home with Kotlářka Praha on Saturday at 4 p.m.); at home against Draci Brno on Sunday at 2 p.m.; and then, next week, at Draci Brno on Thursday, May 31, and Friday, June 1, at 7 p.m.

Draci Brno played Kotlářka Praha twice last weekend, winning, 3-1, at home on Friday and 3-6 in Prague on Saturday. They remain at the top of the standings with an 18-1 record.

Cardion Hroši Brno split a double-header with visiting Skokani Olomouc, losing the first game 0-5 and winning the second 11-1. The Hroši are 12-5.

WOMEN’S FOOTBALL

Lokomotiva Continues Struggle in Play Out Bracket

Lokomotiva Brno Horni Herspice will travel to FC Slovan Liberec on Saturday as it fights to stay in the top women’s football league for a second year.

Lokomotiva, which finished just shy of the Play Off Bracket, has since lost three games and tied only one in four games of the Play Out Bracket. The team that finishes the six rounds of the Play Out bracket with the least points will be relegated to the second league.

The final game of the season is at home on June 2 against FC Hradec Králové at 11 a.m.

BRNO SPORTS RESULTS

Quick results for various Brno professional and recreational sports for the past week. Home team listed first (when applicable).

Friday, May 18, 2018

— Baseball: Olympia Blansko 0, Technika Brno 6

— Baseball: Draci Brno 3, Kotlářka Praha 1

Saturday, May 19, 2018

— Baseball, Game 1: Cardion Hroši Brno 0, Skokani Olomouc 5

— Baseball: Kotlářka Praha 3, Draci Brno 6

— Baseball: Technika Brno 4, Olympia Blansko 11

— Baseball, Game 2: Cardion Hroši Brno 11, Skokani Olomouc 1

— Men’s Football: Zbrojovka Brno 0, Jihlava 0

Sunday, May 20, 2018

— American Football: Aquaponik Ostrava Steelers 35, Brno Sígrs 0

— American Football: Prague Black Panthers 50, Brno Alligators 0

BRNO SPORTS SCHEDULE

The schedule for various Brno professional and recreational sports for the next two weeks. All dates and times subject to change. Home team listed first (when applicable).

Friday, May 25, 2018

— Baseball: Cardion Hroši Brno X Technika Brno, 4 p.m.

— Baseball: Draci Brno X Olympia Blansko, 7 p.m.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

— Women’s Football: FC Slovan Liberec X Lokomotiva Brno H.H., 10:30 a.m.

— Men’s Football: Baník Ostrava X Zbrojovka Brno, 4 p.m.

— Baseball: Draci Brno X Skokani Olomouc, 2 p.m.

— Baseball: Třebíč Nuclears X Cardion Hroši Brno, 4 p.m.

— Baseball: Technika Brno X Kotlářka Praha, 4 p.m.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

— Baseball: Cardion Hroši Brno X Kotlářka Praha, 11 a.m.

— Baseball: Technika Brno X Draci Brno, 2 p.m.

——————————————————————————-

Thursday, May 31, 2018

— Baseball: Draci Brno X Technika Brno, 7 p.m.

Friday, June 1, 2018

— Baseball: Draci Brno X Technika Brno, 7 p.m.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

— Women’s Football: Lokomotiva Brno H.H. X FC Hradec Králové, 11 a.m.

— Baseball, Game 1: Kotlářka Praha X Cardion Hroši Brno, 1 p.m.

— American Football: Brno Sígrs X Prague Lions, Ragby Bystrc, 3 p.m.

— Baseball, Game 1: Kotlářka Praha X Cardion Hroši Brno, 4 p.m.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

— American Football: Brno Alligators X Aquaponik Ostrava Steelers, Ragby Bystrc, 2 p.m.

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The Brno Sports Report is published every Wednesday. All dates and times are subject to change. Most of the stories are about the traditional “English-speaking” team sports — football, hockey, baseball, basketball, American football, rugby, etc. — but it is also about the interesting local spectator and participation sports — tennis, badminton, running, horse racing, swimming, rock climbing, biking, etc. If you have any suggestions for what should be included, please comment below or send an email to brnosports@gmail.com.

 

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