Serbia won FIFA's U-20 World Cup in a thrilling 2-1 victory over 5-time champion Brazil. Goalkeeper Predrag Rajkovic won the Golden Gloves trophy as the Serbs won their first title.
Russia on Top of European Team Athletics
Team Russia won its fourth title in the European Team Athletics Championships, with a tight victory over defending champions Germany. Russia won 5 events, led by Sergey Shubenkov's season lead in the 110m Hurdles and Darya Klishina's long jump championship record. Sweden, Finland and Norway finished as the bottom three, and are relegated to the lower First League for next year's competition. Replacing them in the 12-team Super League will be Czech Republic, Greece, and the Netherlands after finishing as the top three in the First League this year.
Bode Miller Un-Retiring?
Well, maybe...sort of...
Hamburg 2024 Goes to the Polls
In the spirit of such public referendums these days, Hamburg's 2024 Olympic bid efforts will go through the official hurdle of a public support vote to continue. Organizers say a 50% approval threshold will keep the bid on track to continue against Rome and (um) Boston.
North Africa Big Winners in African Fencing
Egypt and Tunisia came out on top of the overall medal table at the 2015 African Fencing Championships in Cairo, with 15 overall medals each. That included a sweep of all women's and individual and team events for the Tunisians. Egypt, meanwhile, swept the men's team events. Individual medals outside of North Africa athletes went to Senegal's Alexandre Bouzaid in men's epee (gold), and Benin's Yemi Apithy in men's sabre (silver) and Tamryn Carfoot in women's epee (bronze).
More Olympic Field Hockey Berths Filled
The first round of the women's World Hockey League Semifinals in Valencia ended this weekend, with Great Britain, China, and Germany earning the three Olympic berths on the line. Britain won the tournament, with a 2-1 win over China and Germany defeating Argentina for third place in penalties. The top three move on to December's World Hockey League Finals, in Rosario, Argentina. Next up is the second half of the Semifinals, in Antwerp, with another three Olympic berths at stake. New Zealand (12-0 over Poland), Netherlands (11-0, France), and Australia (9-0, Poland) are big winners in the first two days. The men, meanwhile, also start their second semifinal round in Antwerp as well, with Australia a 10-0 winner over France for the highlight win so far.
Defending champion Kenya won the Women's African Nations Championship for the ninth time this weekend, beating Algeria 3-0 in the final match. Cameroon finished third over Senegal in the eight-team tournament. Both Kenya and Algeria move on to the FIVB World Cup later this summer.
A New Rising Star to Watch
16-year old Candace Hill stirred some attention this week with a blistering 10.98 second mark in the 100meters at the Brooks PR Invitational this weekend. With that, she became the first high schooler to break 11 seconds in the event, and is now the new World Youth record holder. That time also would have been good enough for seventh place in the Olympics three years ago. Last time I remember a teenager making such commotion, it was Allyson Felix...
More UEFA Olympic Soccer Qualification Underway
The UEFA men's U-21 Championship started this week, with eight teams, including Serbia (recent winners of the U-20 World Cup) and host Czech Republic. The four semifinalists in this tournament will qualify their nations for the Olympic (U-23) competition next year. Reverting back to pre-2012 rules, England can not represent Great Britain, so their potential Olympic spot will be forfeit and will be re-assigned show they be a semifinalist.
And FIFA's Women's World Cup Moves to Knockout Stages
The Group Stage of the Women's World Cup in Canada ended, with perhaps the only major surprises this week being defending champion Japan only beating hapless Ecuador 1-0, and 53rd-ranked Cameroon moving on in second place in their group. To start the next round, though, the real action is here - #1 Germany beat #5 Sweden (and will face #3 France next), #10 Australia sent off #7 Brazil, and hosts #8 Canada emphatically dismissed #19 Switzerland. The quarterfinals begin on the 26th.
As Does the Copa America
The South American football championship ended its own Group Stage, with the quarterfinals starting on the 24th. Tournament non-South American invitees Jamaica and Mexico properly bowed out, yet recent continental stalwart Ecuador did as well, after a third place finish in Group A behind Chile and Bolivia. Meanwhile, think about this - either Peru or Bolivia will be in the final four after their quarterfinal match on the 25th.
Mo Farah Finally Responds
After much talk around him, double Olympic gold medalist - and national GBR hero - Mo Farah finally commented on the cheating hints surrounding him. After accusations earlier this month that his coach, famed Alberto Salazar, has provided drugs to his runners, including Farah's friend and training partner - and Olympic silver medalist - USA's Galen Rupp, a lot of attention has been thrown Farah's way. Describing the period as 'the two worst weeks of my life', he attempted to address the two missed drug tests brought up in the overall investigation...
South American Gymnastics Champions Crowned
Ahead of the Pan American Games starting next month, the South American Artistic Gymnastics Championships began this week in Santiago, Chile. Brazil and Colombia proved the early dominant powers - both winning 5 medals each across the first four days. Brazil won the women's team gold, with Daniele Hypolito and Leticia Costa going 1-2 in the women's all-around, while Colombia took the men's team, with Jorge Giraldo and Carlos Calvo 1-3 in the men's all-around.
USA Volleyball Wins Pan American Cup
Team USA won the women's Pan American Cup in volleyball, with a 3-0 win over the Dominican Republic. (Congrats!) This marks their fourth title, and matches Cuba for the most ever. The U.S. and the DR qualified for 2016's Grand Prix Group 1, and they will both prepare for the upcoming '15 Grand Prix series. (Volleyball sure is a busy calendar)