August 9, 2019
On the second day of the CMAS World Championship in Roatan, Honduras, Alenka Artnik successfully reached her announced depth and returned back to surface with a white cloth in her hand to prove it. Only ten minutes later Artnik’s success was repeated by Alessia Zecchini. The two competitors now share the World Championship Gold as well as the World Record in constant weight, the so-called royal discipline of freediving, which allows any fin technique (competitors usually opt for monofin) two rope pulls (at the bottom and at the top) and no weight removal on the way back to the surface.
In the Diveye livestream of the competition the two winning dives of the women were wonderfully reported by Samo Jeranko, who just a bit earlier elegantly dived to 108 metres, earning a bronze which he shares with American diver Daniel Koval. The competition was won by the incredible Alexey Molchanov, who dived to the World Record depth of 125 metres, while Andey Matveenko was in the second place with 115 metres, both from Russia.
Another Slovenian diver, Neža Cec, was set to dive to 74 metres, but she turned back at 62 metres. As the second part of the competition was taking place from two platforms with only one Diveye available, Neža’s dive wasn’t filmed under water.
Diveye, an underwater camera that follows the diver into the depths and streams real-time footage to the surface and online, was first tested in 2017. This innovation has finally opened freediving to a global audience, which until very recently was not really a spectator sport. This is perhaps the reason why such an exciting event has been live streamed on Facebook instead of being shown by the national broadcaster. Nevertheless, curiosity about the rules and excitement expressed by many of the 38,000 viewers suggests this might soon change.
Footage from the Championship’s is available here, Samo Jeranko dives at about 1:00:00, Alenka Artnik at about 1:21:00 and is followed by Alessia Zecchini, Andrey Matveenko and Alexey Molchanov.
The competition is not over yet. What remains is the constant weight bifins discipline on Saturday, August 10. The discipline is similar to monofin, only that the efficient dolphin move is not allowed. The current World Record holder for women is Alenka Artnik at 92 metres.
August 8, 2019
On the second day of the Freediving Championship in Honduras the Slovenian freediver Alenka Artnik is expected to perform in the constant weight (monofin) diving discipline.
Accodring to the start list, Artnik aims to dive to 113 metres at 18:20 central European time. A successful dive to this depth would mean the third world record in only one week. Last Sunday Artnik dived to 111 metres at the Caribbean Cup, which was taking place at the same location, and only one day later the world record was raised to 112 metres by the Italian diver Alessia Zecchini.
Right after Artnik, Alessia Zecchini is planning to dive to the same depth at 18:30 CET. If both are successful, this would be the fourth time the World Record was broken or equalled in a single week.
For anyone interested in following the competition live, Diveye live streaming begins at 16:55 central European time:
STA, 8 August 2019 - Maribor are in a two-goal hole after the first leg of the third round of qualifying for the UEFA Champions League after losing to Norway's Rosenborg 1:3 at home on Wednesday evening.
The Slovenian football champions are thus looking at a virtually impossible mission of advancing to the last round of the qualifications as they are hosted by Rosenborg in Trondheim next week.
Having struggled in the start of the national championship, Maribor wanted to show their worth in the elite European competition last evening in front of some 10,000 spectators in Ljudski Vrt stadium, but the Norwegians were simply too good.
The guests dominated the first half, which ended without goals, with the first one coming only in the 50th minute, as Alexander Soederlund scored from a free kick almost 30 metres away from the goal.
The same player scored for a 2:0 advantage for Rosenborng in the 64th minute with a header coming after another free kick.
It was the Brazilian veteran Marcos Tavares who scored a goal for Maribor some five minutes later with a strong kick from some 25 metres out, but the guests quickly returned the favour by Mike Jensen scoring for 3:1 virtually on the next play.
Maribor head coach Darko Milanič was disappointed by his team's performance in the first leg of the encounter. "A difficult match is behind us, we didn't shine on the offensive end, but we controlled the match well up until the first goal."
"It's unfortunate that we were below our level at an extremely important match," said the coach, who is believed to be sitting on a hot seat, adding that "there were many mistakes" and that the team's play was "very, very bad".
Maribor are in a bad spot, with the loss to Rosenborg coming on top of poor performances in the national league, in which the defending champions are winless after four rounds, sitting in the penultimate spot in the standings.
The return leg with the Norwegian champions is scheduled for next Tuesday. The overall winner will play in the last round of qualifying with the winner of the Croatian-Hungarian encounter between Dinamo Zagreb and Ferencvaros.
August 6, 2019
On the last day of the Caribbean Cup and a day before the beginning of the World Championship on the island of Roatan in Honduras, the Italian freediver Alessia Zecchini dived to 112 metres in a constant weight category monofin dive on Monday.
Only one day earlier the Slovenian Alenka Artnik successfully reached a depth of 111 metres, taking the previous world record of 107 away from Zecchini.
The world record contest, however, seems to be far from over.
After last year’s unsuccessful attempt at 107 metres by Hanako Hirose of Japan, which ended with a blackout 15 metres under the surface, the world record battle seems to be turning into a duel between Artnik and Zecchini.
Nevertheless, following the incident with the Japanese diver Artnik expressed some concerns about her colleague’s wellbeing, and told the media that she would not take part in any world record attempts based on announcements of greater and greater depths at a single event. Artnik’s dive to 105 metres last year appeared to leave the athlete with several metres in her reserves, but she decided not to raise her goals to set a new record. She has announced that she will attempt to a dive to 113 metres in the upcoming World Championship, also held in Roatan, Honduras. According to the Championship’s current schedule, this dive should take place on August 8, 2019.
August 5, 2019
Slovenia's most successful freediver, Alenka Artnik, set a world record in the CWT (constant weight) discipline, reaching depth of 111 metres at the Caribbean Cup in Roatan, Honduras last Sunday.
Alenka Artnik dived to 105 metres last year, while the previous world record holder Alessia Zecchini managed to reach the depth of 107 metres in the same year.
The Caribbean Cup informally counts as a prelude into the CMAS World Championship which will take place in August 6 – 12, in the same location.
Following a successful dive to 111 metres, which, unfortunately wasn’t filmed by a diveye underwater drone camera , Artnik told the media that in the World Championship she will attempt a dive to 113 metres.
STA, 1 August 2019 - Slovenian mountaineers Aleš Česen, Luka Stražar and Brit Tom Livingston will receive the Piolet d'Or, the top award in mountaineering, in September for their ascent of Latok I in August last year (as reported here).
"Three expeditions will be awarded this year. The two others will be posthumous awards, unfortunately. The solo ascends by David Lama and Hansjörg Auer, who, sadly, passed away in Canada this spring," Česen has been quoted as saying by the website of the Slovenian Mountaineering Association.
BREAKING NEWS: Mountain Equipment Pro Team Athlete Tom Livingstone has made the long awaited first ascent of Latok I [7145m] from the North over 7 days with Ales Cesen and Luka Strazar - https://t.co/PqnzIdX1hN pic.twitter.com/N50kg6xlN2— MOUNTAIN EQUIPMENT (@MTNEQUIPMENT) August 13, 2018
Česen, Stražar and Livingston were only the second expedition that ascended the 7145-metre Latok I and the first ever to reach the peak over its north face.
This will be the second Pioler d'Or for both Česen and Stražar. The former was part of an expedition that won the award in 2015, while the latter was part of an expedition honoured in 2012.
It will also be the eight Piolet d'Or going to Slovenia, since the award was first handed out 27 years ago. Only last year, Andrej Štremfelj was honoured with the lifetime achievement award.
The awards, given out by the French magazine Montagnes and The Groupe de Haute Montagne, will be conferred at the Ladek Mountain Festival running between 19 and 22 September in Poland.
We’re huge fans of Janja Garnbret at TSN, the 20-year-old Slovene who’s already won more world championship events than any other athlete, widely seen as the best sport climber in the world, and a hot tip for next year’s Olympics, when climbing will make its debut.
It’s thus a delight, but no surprise, to learn that Garnbret – who excels at both Lead and Bouldering – is among the ten finalists for the Sportswoman of the Year award for 2019, given by the New York-based Women's Sports Foundation since 1980.
Other women on the list are the American alpine skiing star Mikaela Shiffrin and artistic gymnastic champion Simone Biles. Others in the individual sport category also include American track and field athlete Ajee Wilson, American boxer Claressa Shields, American mountain biker Kate Courtney, American Paralympic swimmer Rebecca Meyers, Paralympic triathlete Allysa Seely, British auto racer Jamie Chadwick and South Korean golfer Jin Young Ko.
Anyone can now vote for Janja Garnbret, seen in action below, at the related website, right up until 2 August in Slovenia, or 3 August 6:59am CET. Multiple votes for Garnbret, or other finalists, are possible if you have multiple email addresses.
The winners, one from an individual sport and another from a team sport, will be announced in New York on 16 October.
You can see all our stories and videos of Janja Garnbret here
STA, 1 August 2019 - Slovenian football champions Maribor qualified for the third round of the UEFA Champions League qualifiers by eliminating AIK in Stockholm on Wednesday evening by virtue of scoring more away goals. Maribor had to work extra time as the regular time ended with a 3:3 tie on aggregate.
After beating AIK 2:1 in Maribor last week, the perennial Slovenian champions survived the tough match in Stockholm by losing 3:2 after extra time and advancing to the next round of qualifying on away goals.
It was Romanian Alexandru Cretu to score the decisive goal for Maribor in the 116th minute with a header assisted by Mitja Viler, bringing Maribor closer to what would be the club's third appearance in the group stage of the Champions League.
"I don't feel like a hero, this is a result of the hard work of the entire team. It was a tough match, we knew that it would not be easy because they have players who fight hard all the time," Cretu said after the match.
In the third round, Maribor will play the Norwegian champions Rosenborg, which eliminated the Belarusian champions BATE Borisov. The first leg will be played in Slovenia's second largest city on 7 August.
Maribor head coach Darko Milanič said that the team had believed in success until the last minute. "Both teams were too good for this stage, and it's unfortunate that we met at this point already. Well, it turned out great for us.
"Unbelievable! This is a match everybody will remember, not only players, but you and the fans too," he told reporters, adding that Maribor was already looking ahead and preparing for the next opponent Rosenborg.
Milanič said he had never coached against the Norwegian champions, but that he had been told by sport director Zlatko Zahovič that Maribor was "in for a hard fight with a very well physically prepared team."
If Maribor fail to advance past Rosenborg and secure the last qualifying round for the Champions League, they will enter the last round of qualifying for the UEFA Europa League.
Slovenia’s Olympic judo champion, Tina Trstenjak, won her first IJF gold medal in some 18 months at Zagreb Grand Prix over the weekend, beating Japan’s Nami Nabekura in the under 63 kg event. In the over 78 kg group, Anamari Velensek won a bronze medal.
July 26, 2019
The latest in a string of young basketball players who have left Slovenia for Real Madrid is a talented fourteen-year-old called Jan Vide, born in 2005 and a member of Helios Suns from Domžale.
This is the second year in the row that a young member of Helios left for the Spanish giant. Last year it was Urban Klavžar (2004) who left his Helios orange jersey for the white Royal one.
In the last season Vide played two tournaments with Real Madrid’s junior team, which led to the decision to invite the young basketball player to join the other three young Slovenes already playing for the club. Besides Klavžar, these are Dan Duščak (2002) and Žiga Samar (2001). Real Madrid is also a home to a couple of professional Slovenian basketball players, Klemen Prepelič and Anthony Randolph, both members of the Slovenian national team who won the 2017 European Basketball Championship.
Some observers have already pointed to similarities between Jan Vide and Luka Dončić, who received the NBA Rookie of the Year award this June. Luka joined Real Madrid’s under-16 team at the age of 13 and became a regular player in Real Madrid’s senior team during the 2015-2016 season, before joining the NBA and Dallas Mavericks in 2018.
Sports commentators emphasize that emerging new names in junior leagues are good news for the future of the Slovenian national team, which will defend its 2017 title at the next European Championship in 2021.
STA, 25 July 2019 - Slovenian football champions Maribor opened the second round of qualifying for the UEFA Champions League against AIK Stockholm with a 2:1 win at home on Wednesday evening. The team is happy with the win, but is aware that the away goal scored by the Swedish side will make the return leg next week very difficult.
Some 7,800 spectators in Ljudski Vrt stadium saw Maribor score early in the match, with Rok Kronaveter convert in the 6th minute, after which the Slovenian champions continued to apply pressure.
But the 12-time Swedish champions responded, as Henok Goitom scored a goal in the 28th minute with a diagonal shot from the left side of the box.
It took Maribor only ten minutes to score the second goal, with Saša Ivković converting a header after a corner kick by Kronaveter.
Maribor head coach Darko Milanič said the win was a self-confidence boost. "We have a win in our pocket, and we have played a good game, which will certainly be helpful in the future."
Milanič said that the opponent was very difficult, "perhaps even too good for this stage of competition", which is why he expects a tough return leg on 31 July. He is aware that the away goal scored by AIK is a problem.
"A majority of things in our game were really excellent, it's a shame that we were too offensive after we scored the first goal and let them score the equaliser."
Milanič expects a different game from the Swedish champions in Stockholm. "We have to be prepared for much more tempo. We will need to adjust, calm down their game and be good in possessing the ball," he concluded.
The winner of the encounter will play in the next round of qualifying against the winner of the matchup between BATE Borisov of Belarus and Rosenborg of Norway.