05 Aug 2019, 11:27 AM

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.

02 Aug 2019, 10:13 AM

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.

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.

Related: Books about Slovenia - Alpine Warriors, A History of Modern Slovenian Alpinism

01 Aug 2019, 20:05 PM

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

01 Aug 2019, 11:00 AM

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.

29 Jul 2019, 19:18 PM

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.

26 Jul 2019, 09:00 AM

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.


25 Jul 2019, 13:09 PM

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.

22 Jul 2019, 13:55 PM

After last week’s shocking 9th place finish Janja Garnbret did much better this week, finishing 2nd in Briançon, France. In first place was Korea’s Chaehyun Seo, while in third came Japan’s Natsuki Tani. Two other Slovenian women made the top 8, with Mia Krampl 4th and Vita Lukan 7th.

Turning to the men’s competition, all three medals were won by Japanese climbers, with the gold going to Hidemasa Nishida, followed by Hiroto Shimizu and Shuta Tanaka. The highest ranked Slovene with Domen Škofic, in 7th place.

The weekend put the Japanese in first place in the team rankings, with 375 points, Slovenia second (224), and the USA third (179)

More details results can be found at the IFSC site.

16 Jul 2019, 13:02 PM

STA, 16 July 2019 - Slovenian mountaineer Janez Svoljšak, a member of the Kranj Alpine Association, has died during an expedition in Pakistan, the Slovenian Alpine Association (PZS) said on Monday.

The 25-year-old from Škofja Loka (NW) died in a base camp under the 6,650 m Tahu Rutum mountain in the Karakoram mountain range in the wee hours of Monday.

Svoljšak reportedly uttered a wheezing sound during sleep, passed out and stopped breathing. His team started resuscitating him immediately but gave up after three hours of futile efforts. Arrangements are now being made to bring his body back to Slovenia.

Svoljšak was an established mountaineer, having conquered peaks in Pakistan, Patagonia, the Canadian Rockies as well as Montana and Colorado in the US.

His career highlights include climbing the Schmidt route up the North Face of the Matterhorn alone as well as a sole single-day ascent to the summit of Mont Blanc via the Innominata ridge - both achievements are considered a tour-de-force of mountaineering.

In May, he and a fellow mountaineer completed a series of climbs in remote mountains of Alaska on routes that no human ever set foot on before, conquering three virgin peaks in the process.

The deceased mountaineer was the European Champion in ice climbing in 2016 as well as the winner of one of the World Cup games.

14 Jul 2019, 16:49 PM

By now fans know the routine – Janja Garnbret will come out on top of the Lead and Bouldering events, with her peers competing for second and third places. But this weekend saw a shock result in Chamonix, France, as the 20-year old Slovene, who already has more victories than any other competitor in the sport’s history, reached just 9th place in the semi-finals, not even making it through to the final round. With Garnbret watching the top place on the podium went to Korea’s Chaehyun Seo, followed by China’s YueTong Zhang and Austria’s Jessica Pilz. The highest ranked Slovene was Lučka Rakovec, in 7th place, while Mia Krampl was 11th and Vita Lučkan 12th.

The men’s event was won by the Czech Adam Ondra, followed by Germany’s Alexander Megos and Austria’s Jakob Schubert. The top Slovene men in Chamonix were 18th placed Martin Bergant and 20th placed Domen Škofic.

13 Jul 2019, 10:35 AM

STA, 13 July 2019 - The 29th season of the Slovenian football premier league will get under way today, featuring Maribor as the defending champion and nine more teams looking to upset the most dominant team in the history of Slovenian club football.

Maribor have won 16th Slovenian league titles so far and are followed by Olimpija of Ljubljana, which has restored its status as a serious rival in recent years, managing to snatch the title in 2016 and 2018.

While things were also fairly close in the last season, a strong challenge by Olimpija is looking somewhat less likely ahead of the new session, with Maribor having acquired the Ljubljana team's leading scorer and the no. 2 scorer overall in the last season Rok Kronaveter.

Maribor, who have successfully began their qualifying campaign for the Champions League, already have the league's top scorer, Luka Zahović, the son of Slovenia's former international star Zlatko Zahović. What is more, the team has been joined by the fourth best scorer of the league in the last season, midfielder Rudi Požeg Vancaš.

"I'm happy with the roster. It clearly has quality and can meet the demands we have," Maribor's head coach Darko Milanič told the press. He said the goal was to repeat the last season, when Maribor also made it to the final of the Slovenian Cup competition and to the third round of qualifying for the UEFA Europa League.

The Cup was won by Olimpija, which lost its first qualifying match for the Europa League on Thursday and has mostly been making headlines in recent weeks over reports its owner Milan Mandarić is about to sell the club to an Italian businessman.

The team's coach Safet Hadžić in confident nonetheless: "I'm very happy with the preparations... perhaps I still expect a reinforcement in a position or two, but momentarily all is ok. We're a club that is chasing the title, but we should not underestimate the other teams. Domžale and the rest are not naive."

Domžale, whose two titles date back to 2007 and 2008, is indeed looking as a potential challenger, having reinforced the team significantly. The club leadership says the goal is to advance step by step and get close to Maribor and Olimpija.

The new season will be opened today at 6pm by the Tabor Sežana - Aluminij encounter, while Maribor will also play, against Triglav at 8.15pm.

A total of 36 rounds will be played until 16 May, with a winter break scheduled between 14 December and 22 February. All the matches will be broadcast by TV Slovenija or Planet TV.

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