This week is very exciting for Canadian sports because of three events. First, the Canadian Women’s World Cup team has become the first Canadian soccer team to advance past the opening round of a World Cup. Second, the World Road Cycling Championships is being held in Canada for the second time in 29 years, and finally Hockey Night in Canada will be returning to CBC with the start of the regular season this week.
Canada’s Women’s World Cup team has done what no other Canadian soccer team has ever done. Not only are they the first Canadian team to make it past the opening round in a World Cup tournament, they also beat China 1-0 in their quarter-final game, which put them through to the semi-finals. Unfortunately, Canada’s winning streak ended on Sunday Oct 5 when they lost their semi-final game against Sweden. It definitely was not an easy game for Sweden to win, however. Canada’s Kara Lang actually scored the first goal and Canada took the lead at the 64th minute. With only 26 minutes remaining Canada went into a defensive mode to guard their lead and it looked like they were going to win. Their luck turned when Malin Mostroem scored the equalizing goal in the 79th minute. Seven minutes later Sweden’s Josefine Oeqvist scored the final goal, which gave Sweden a 2-1 win over Canada. Sweden will be advancing to the final against Germany, who beat the United States 3-0 to progress, on Sunday Oct 12 in Carson, California. Although, Canada did not make it to the final they have done better than any Canadian team in this tournament and will play the United States in the consolation game on Saturday Oct 11 in Carson, California. If you would like to know more about the Women’s team or the World Cup visit http://www.canadasoccer.com.
The World Road Cycling Championships started on Monday Oct 6 in Hamilton, Ontario and they will be ending on Sunday Oct 12. The last time this event was in Canada was in 1974 when it was hosted by Montreal. In order to celebrate the event the city of Hamilton is having a World Cycling Festival, which began with an official opening ceremony on Sunday Oct 5, and will continue for the length of the Championships. The focus of the festival will be on cycling and Canadian culture. Many events of interest to cycling fans and non-cyclists will be taking place this week, including:
“¢ Tastes of Canada Gala Dinner: Oct 10 at 6:30 p.m. Official Gala Dinner of the World Road Cycling Championships. Live music and comedy performances.
“¢ Bikes, Bands and Beer: Oct 9 at 7 p.m. A party with live entertainment and beer.
“¢ A Celebration of Indigenous People: Oct 9-12 from 10 a.m-8 p.m. A Six Nations festival featuring demonstrations of aboriginal song and dance, cuisine, artisan and crafters market and interactive learning centres.
“¢ Rooftop Festival: Oct 9-Oct 12 from 12 p.m.-9 p.m. Art displays, live music and dancing.
These are just a few of the many exciting events taking place during the festival. For more information about the World Road Cycling Championships and the World Cycling Festival visit http://www.hamilton2003.com.
Finally, this week is the week that the regular NHL season begins again, kicking off tonight, October 8, with the Mighty Ducks playing the Stars, the Wilds playing the Blackhawks, and the Devils playing the Bruins at 8 p.m. ET. Coverage of all of these games will be on ESPN. TSN will also be covering the Mighty Ducks vs. the Stars. More important to Canadians, though, is the return of Hockey Night in Canada on CBC which will be on October 9 with the Canadiens playing the Senators in Ottawa at 7 p.m. ET and the Flames playing the Canucks in Vancouver at 10:30 p.m. ET. For more information on the NHL visit http://www.nhl.com, and for more information on Hockey Night in Canada visit http://www.cbc.ca.
This is indeed a very exciting week for Canadian sports with the occurrence of two notable events and the return of a regular Canadian favorite. I am sure that many Canadians will be enjoying this week’s festivities and games.