Sports in brief - 2012-11-01

  • 2012-10-31

In VTB United League action on Oct. 28, Latvian national champions VEF Riga lost on the road to Russian basketball club Krasnoyarsk Enisey 93:96 (22:26, 17:24, 18:19, 29:17, 7:10) in overtime, reports LETA. Earl Rowland was the high scorer for VEF Riga with 23 points, followed by Kristaps Janicenoks with 21 points. Elmedin Kikanovic was the high scorer for Enisey with 21 points. Petr Gubanov added 16 points. VEF Riga is currently in third place in Group B with two wins and two losses. Enisey is in second place with two wins and one loss.

Latvia’s best male tennis player - Ernests Gulbis - has retained his 151st place in the latest ATP rankings, moving up 8 spots since the last rankings, reports LETA. Currently, Gulbis has 356 ranking points. Among the other Latvian players in the ATP rankings, Andis Juska remains at 373rd, Deniss Pavlovs slips one place to 654th. Martins Podzus drops 71 places to 1,234th. Mikelis Libietis is 1,386th; Krisjanis Stabins - 1,395th; Oskars Vaskis - 1,561th; Arkadijs Slobodkins - 1,665th. At the top of the table, Roger Federer (Switzerland) remains first, followed by Novak Djokovic (Serbia) and Andy Murray (Great Britain). Two weeks ago Gulbis lost to Serbia’s Janko Tipsarevic 6-3, 6-4 in the second round of the Vienna ATP World Tour 250 series tournament, and to Romania’s Victor Hanescu 6-3, 6-3 in the first qualification match of the Basel ATP World Tour 250 series tournament. Among the other Latvian players in the ATP rankings, Andis Juska climbed ten places, Deniss Pavlovs moved up four places, and Martins Podzus regained five places.

In Kontinental Ice Hockey League (KHL) action on Monday, Latvian ice hockey club Riga Dinamo lost to last season’s KHL champs Moscow Dynamo 3:1, reports LETA. Gints Meija scored the lone goal for the Latvian club. Nicklas Backstrom, Marek Kvapil and Deniss Kokarev scored the goals for Moscow. In October, the Latvian club was successful in gaining the maximum three points from only one out of its 12 matches. The Latvian club headed to St. Petersburg for a Wednesday game against local club SKA. In the KHL’s Western Conference standings, Dinamo remains in last place with 20 points from 22 games, whilst Moscow Dynamo is in first place in the conference with 45 points from 21 games.

The Latvian Ice Hockey Federation has named former national team forward Aigars Cipruss and Canadian specialist Tom Coolen as the new assistant coaches of the Latvian national men’s ice hockey team. Cipruss and Coolen will replace last year’s assistants - Artis Abols and Viktors Ignatjevs. The 40-year-old Cipruss has been assistant coach with the Latvian U-20 men’s ice hockey team the past two years. He also coached Latvian junior team ‘’Juniors’’ in the Russian Junior League’s B Division last season. In his national team career, Cipruss splayed in 172 matches for Latvia, scoring 50 goals and making 62 assists. Meanwhile, the 58-year-old Coolen has coached various teams in North America and Europe. ‘’Coolen has been in hockey for over 30 years, and will be a helpful assistant to head coach Ted Nolan and a great asset to the national team’s coaching staff,’’ the president of the Latvian Ice Hockey Federation Kirovs Lipmans said. Both coaches will begin their preparations with the national team next week, when the Latvian squad will play two exhibition games against the Russian B squad.Latvia will host an Olympic qualification tournament from February 7 to 10.