03 Jul 2021, 17:48 PM

STA, 3 July - Slovenian rider Tadej Pogačar has taken the overall lead at Tour de France after an individual attack that secured him the second place in the 150.8-km, eighth stage of the prestigious race from Oyonnax to Le Grand-Bornand on Saturday.

The member of UAE Team Emirates broke off from all competitors for the yellow jersey 30 kilometres ahead of the finish line to cross it second only to Dylan Teuns of Belgium.

It was a second stage win in a row at Tour de France for a Slovenian after Friday's win in stage seven by Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious).

The 22-year-old reigning Tour de France champion now has an advantage of 1 minute and 48 seconds ahead of Belgium's Wout Van Aert (Jumbo-Visma) and more than four minutes and a half ahead of Alexey Lutsenko of Kazakhstan (Astana-Premier Tech).

"The beginning was very demanding, there were cyclists everywhere, all of them wanting to break off. At the end I felt good in this weather, which suits me well," Pogačar said about the rainy and cold weather.

"Ahead of the last climbs, I told my team mates that I wanted to beak off the race and we managed to do it. I'm really happy with the outcome," added the new overall leader.

The remaining Slovenians fell significantly behind, including last year's Tour de France runner-up Primož Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), who is struggling with injuries sustained in falls in the early stages of the race.

He crossed the finish line 35 minutes behind the winner, while Mohorič was better by some six minutes than Roglič.

02 Jul 2021, 17:29 PM

STA, 2 July 2021 - Slovenia's Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious) won stage 7 of the Tour de France from La Vierzon to Le Creusot on Friday and took the polka dot jersey for the best climber. Defending champion Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) lost some ground.

Mohorič won the longest stage of this year's tour, at 259 kilometres, in a getaway group of 29 riders and now places fourth in the overall rankings, 3:09 minutes behind the Dutch race leader Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin Fenix).

"I knew yesterday that today could be a good day... Until the final moment I could not believe what I have achieved," Mohorič said after earning his third stage win in the Grand Tour races (he also has wins in Giro d'Italia and the Vuelta a Espana).

Pogačar is now fifth, 3:43 minutes behind, but the climbing specialist is counting on the upcoming hilly section of the race to make his move.

"This was really a difficult stage. Very difficult... The next two days will be hard as well, but we can still be optimistic about the next two weeks," the defending champion told TV Slovenija.

Last year's runner-up Primož Roglič, badly bruised in a crash in the first stage, lost a lot of ground and is now outside the top 30 with a gap of more than nine minutes.

01 Jul 2021, 10:19 AM

STA, 30 June 2021 - Slovenian cycling star Tadej Pogačar won stage five of the Tour de France race on Wednesday. Last year's winner of the Tour was 19 seconds faster than Stefan Küng from Switzerland in the 27.2-kilometre individual time trial between Changé and Laval Espace Mayenne. Slovenia's other star, Primož Roglič, was 44 seconds behind, finishing seventh.

Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) started stage five 39 seconds behind Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin-Fenix) from the Netherlands and finished it with the 26th victory of his career and his fourth time trial victory.

He was eight seconds too slow for the yellow jersey, which remained in the hands of der Poel.

Küng was surprisingly followed by Denmark's Jonas Vingegaard (Jumbo-Visma) in third place.

"That has been a truly good day for me. I did not make any mistakes and the weather was perfect for me too," said the 22-year-old Pogačar told the organisers after the race, adding that he was looking forward to the rest of the Tour.

Roglič, who is recovering from falls in the first three stages, showed he is in great shape today and finished seventh. "Quite simply, I'm grateful that I'm even here. Then you just try to give your best. As long as we are here, there is hope. Better times can always come," the 31-year-old Roglič told public broadcaster RTV Slovenija.

Cyclists will next take on a 160.6-kilometre plain route from Tours to Chateauroux on Thursday.

New 7-Stage 290-km Cycling Trail Opens in Julian Alps

22 Jun 2021, 14:12 PM

STA, 22 June 2021 - The Slovenian women's basketball team have been knocked out of the FIBA Women's EuroBasket 2021 in France with a defeat against Russia (93:75) in the quarter-finals qualification.

For the second time in a row, the Slovenian women's basketball team leaves EuroBasket Women after the additional qualification rounds.

In 2019, they were stopped by Belgium in Belgrade, and this year they finished the tournament in Strasbourg with two wins and two losses.

After defeating Slovenia yesterday, Russia will now play Belgium in the quarter-finals. The other three pairs are Belarus-Sweden, France-Bosnia and Serbia-Spain.

The Slovenian team will have another chance to improve on their achievements in two years' time on home court, as the 39th European Women Basketball Championship will be held in Slovenia.

Slovenia improved on the results compared to the previous tournament in Serbia, but this time, after two good performances against Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina, the team also put up two very poor showings, as Belgium beat them by 35 points and Russia by 18.

Yesterday's match against Russia was practically already decided in the first half. After a bad start, Slovenia continued to do even worse.

Their opponents grabbed ten offensive rebounds in the first quarter and easily built up a 15-point lead, and at one point the Russians were up 46:19.

In the second half, the balance of power remained the same. The Russians had the game in their hands, and the difference did not go below 20 points, except for a few short minutes.

Russia won the rebounding battle 41:31, had 28 assists, hit 13 threes and had four players in double figures. Shante Evans (21 points, 8 rebounds, 7/9 shooting) and Eva Lisec (19 points, 7 rebounds, 6/10 shooting) scored the most points for Slovenia.

Slovenia's head coach Damir Grgić said after the match: 'I would like to congratulate my players for fighting until the end, but today we were simply too weak for Russia. They were a much better opponent, they took advantage of everything we don't have."

"Now it is time for analysis. We must keep our heads up - in two years' time, this generation will have a new opportunity. This is still a young team that can play at least one more Olympic cycle together. I am proud of them and their work," added Grgič.

The team captain Nika Barič also spoke after the game: "The Russians dictated the rhythm from the first minute. We allowed ourselves too many mistakes, especially in defence. Congratulations to Russia for the win, and all credit to my teammates for fighting until the last second."

13 Jun 2021, 16:35 PM

STA, 13 June 2021 - Slovenia's Tadej Pogačar has won the Tour of Slovenia, the country's biggest cycling road race, after defending the leading position in the final stage from Ljubljana to Novo Mesto on Sunday.

This marks the 25th career victory for the 22-year-old UAE Team Emirates rider, who won last year's Tour de France.

"We're really happy. This was a well prepared race and we had loads of fun," Pogačar said.

After a short break, he will compete in the national championship before heading to France.

"We'll see if my form picks up a bit more, for now I feel quite okay. We'll see in a couple of weeks," said Pogačar, who is considered the top favourite at the Tour de France.

The German Phil Bauhaus (Bahrain Victorious) won the final, 175-kilometre stage, after he had already claimed the opening stage.

Pogačar secured the win in the second stage, which ended with a climb to Celje Castle.

In the final rankings, Pogačar finished one minute and 21 seconds ahead of last year's winner, the Italian Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates) and his compatriot Matteo Sobrero (Astana-Premier Tech), who was a further 14 seconds adrift.

Two more Slovenians were in the top ten. Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious) finished seventh and Jan Polanc (UAE Team Emirates) was ninth.

- Tour of Slovenia, final standings:
 1. Tadej Pogačar (Slo/UAE Team Emirates)         15 h 11:26
 2. Diego Ulissi (Ita/UAE Team Emirates)                1:21
 3. Matteo Sobrero (Ita/Astana-Premier Tech)            1:35
 4. Rafal Majka (Pol/UAE Team Emirates)                 2:08
 5. James Shaw (UK/Ribble Weldtite)                     2:29
 6. Tanel Kangert (Est/BikeExchange)                    2:34
 7. Matej Mohorič (Slo/Bahrain Victorious)              2:39
 8. Giovanni Carboni (Ita/Bardiani-CSF-Faizane)         2:46
 9. Jan Polanc (Slo/UAE Team Emirates)                  3:21
10. Jonathan Lastra (Spa/Caja Rural-Seguros RGA         4:45
12 Jun 2021, 16:08 PM

STA, 12 June 2021 - Italy's Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates) won the fourth stage of the 27th Tour of Slovenia on Saturday. Slovenia's Tadej Pogačar, also a rider of UAE Team Emirates, was second and is expected to win the race tomorrow.

Third place went to Matteo Sobrero of Italy (Astana).

The 164.1 km-long hilly stage of the race took place in the west of Slovenia, running from Ajdovščina to Nova Gorica. It featured steep challenges such as the concluding climb to Sveta Gora above Nova Gorica (2.5 km/13%), during which the winner was decided.

In overall rankings, Pogačar, who will soon defend his Tour de France title, is in the lead, followed by his teammate Ulissi, whom it seemed he did not want to beat today, and Sobrero. Slovenia's Matej Mohorič (Team Bahrain Victorious) has fallen from second place to seventh.

The final and the longest stage of the race will be held tomorrow, taking the riders from Ljubljana to Novo Mesto. The start of the stage will coincide with another major Slovenian cycling event - the amateur Franja Marathon, which also kicks off in Ljubljana.

11 Jun 2021, 17:50 PM

STA, 11 June 2021 - The Spaniard Jon Aberasturi (Caja Rural) won the third stage of the Tour of Slovenia road cycling race from Brežice to Krško on Friday, while Slovenia's Tadej Pogačar, the reigning Tour de France champion, kept the overall lead.

In the final sprint of the 165.8-kilometre stage, Aberasturi beat the second placed Slovenian Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious).

After three out of the five stages, Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) still has a significant overall lead on Mohorič and this team-mate Diego Ulissi of Italy.

On Saturday, the participants of the race around Slovenia are in for a stage between Ajdovščina and Nova Gorica (164.1 km).

It will take them for five categorised climbs, including the concluding climb to Sveta Gora above Nova Gorica (2.5 km/13%).

11 Jun 2021, 11:32 AM

STA, 10 June 2021 - Tamara Zidanšek lost in the semi-finals of the French Open in Paris to Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in two sets (5:7 and 3:6) on Thursday. This was only the second semi-final appearance for a Slovenian woman tennis player in the singles competition at a Grand Slam tournament in almost four decades and a half.

On Tuesday, the 23-year-old defeated Paula Badosa of Spain in three sets to become the first Slovenian to advance to the semi-finals of a Grand Slam tournament since 1977, when Mima Jaušovec won it all on the Paris clay.

The 29-year-old Pavlyuchenkova, however, proved to be a much more difficult opponent as she dominated the court to become the first Russian after 2014 to make it to the finals of Roland-Garros, whose prize money this year is EUR 34.4 million.

"I had opportunities in both sets, but I failed to take advantage of them, like in the previous matches. I nevertheless fought until the end. I am satisfied with how I stood on the court," Zidanšek told reporters after the loss.

"I realised at this tournament that I can match the best players in the world. I will now try to leverage this in the future, as new tournaments and new opportunities will follow soon," she added.

The Russian, who is currently 32nd on the WTA rankings, will play in the finals the winner of the second semi-finals match between Barbora Krejčíková of the Czech Republic and Maria Sakkari of Greece.

Zidanšek is also expected to crack the top 50 on the WTA rankings after the career result, as she is currently ranked 85th. She played in the finals of WTA tournaments twice - this year in Bogota and in Nürnberg in 2019

10 Jun 2021, 15:52 PM

STA, 10 June 201 - Slovenian cycling superstar Tadej Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates) won the second stage of the Tour of Slovenia between Žalec and Celje on Thursday. At the conclusion of the 147-kilometre stage, he was the best rider so far in the climb to Celje Castle to finish almost a minute and a half ahead of the competition.

With the stage win, the 22-year-old reigning Tour de France champion also took over the green jersey of the overall leader in the race around his native country.

With Pogačar clicking on all cylinders, the question was only who will take the second place, which went to Slovenia's Matej Mohorič (Bahrain Victorious), who beat Italy's Diego Ulissi (UAE Team Emirates) in the sprint at the finish line.

The shortest of the five stages in the 27th Tour of Slovenia started in Žalec, and took the competitors through Velenje, Mozirje and Vransko and back to Žalec, before taking a turn to Celje for the first time.

On Friday, riders will hit a diverse third stage from Brežice to Krško with three categorised climbs (Drensko Rebro, Studenec and Sremič).

10 Jun 2021, 13:54 PM

STA, 9 June 2021 - Slovenian judoka Andreja Leški won the silver medal in the 63kg category at the Judo World Championship on Wednesday, a career highlight for the 24-year-old.

The Slovenian held her own against four-time world champion Clarisse Agbegnenou in the grand final, until the French competitor scored a waza-ari one minute before the end, before ending the duel with a final pinning.

Leški, fifth in the world rankings, already won bronze at the European Championship in Lisbon earlier this year

09 Jun 2021, 20:19 PM

STA, 9 June 2021 - German sprinter Phil Bauhaus is the winner of the first stage of the Tour of Slovenia, beating the Spaniard Jon Aberasturi by mere centimetres in the final spring of the 151.5-kilometre stage on Wednesday. Rui Felipe Oliveira of Portugal was third.

"Our goal was to finish the stage with a sprint. The final kilometre was very fast. The team has done a fantastic job, we had everything under control all the time," Bauhaus told TV Slovenija.

The first stage that was mostly flat led the riders from Ptuj through eastern Slovenia and to the spa resort of Rogaška Slatina.

Tomorrow, a 147-kilometre stage with two moderate climbs between Žalec and Celje is likely to see the first clash of the favourites, chief among them Slovenia's Tadej Pogačar.

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