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  • Wolfsburg on brink of Champions League last eight

  • Tokyo Olympics make late bid for gender equality

  • Grammozis becomes Schalke’s fifth coach of the season

March 3

Wolfsburg on brink of Champions League last eight

The German women’s football champions VfL Wolfsburg are once again on the brink of a place in the Champions League quarter-finals, winning their round of 16 first leg against Norwegian club Lillestrom SK 2-0 on Wednesday.

Both goals came from Germany veteran Alexandra Popp, in the 2nd and 59th minute. Shortly before the end, Wolfsburg were lucky that the Norwegian outsiders missed a great chance on the counterattack

Due to the travel restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic, the second match in second match will take place in Gyor, Hungary, on March 10.

Tokyo Olympics makes late bid for gender equality

Tokyo Olympics CEO Toshiro Muto has announced that the 12 women will be added to the Games’ executive board, which will increase in size from 33 to 45 as a result.

Seiko Hashimoto, the new president of the organising committee, was instrumenatl in the changes. She took charge in February after former president Yoshiro Mori was forced to resign after making derogatory comments about women. 

“Regarding the promotion of gender equality, we believe that it is necessary to work with a sense of speed and produce solid results in order to restore the trust in the organising committee,” Hashimoto said at the start of the meeting where the decision was rubberstamped.

The postponed Games are now set to begin on July 23, with the Paralympics following on August 24.

March 2

Grammozis replaces Christian Gross at Schalke

Schalke have appointed Dimitrios Grammozis as their new coach, the struggling Bundesliga club confirmed on Tuesday evening. 

Grammozis replaces the fired Christian Gross, becomes Schalke’s fifth coach this season, following David Wagner, Manuel Baum, Huub Stevens and Gross. 

Grammozis, 42, has been given a contract until June 2022 and his first game is a crunch clash with relegation rivals Mainz. 

“I am very eager for this task,” Grammozis said. “I will use the short time to the first league game to try to get as comprehensive a
picture as possible — and of course we want to start with a victory against Mainz.”

Last-placed Schalke are nine points from safety with 11 matches left in the season.

Fredi Bobic to depart Frankfurt at season’s end

Eintracht Frankfurt‘s head of sport, Fredi Bobic, is set to leave the club at the end of the season according to comments he made to German broadcaster ARD on Tuesday.

“I don’t need to fool around. I have already stated the wish to leave the club in summer 2020 a year ago, before the coronavirus,” he said.

Because of the global pandemic Bobic remained in place but Frankfurt did not confirm the former Germany striker would leave his position. Philip Holzer, advisory board chairman, said talks had taken place but were not “not settled and will next resume after the next advisory board meeting in mid-March.”

Bobic’s current contract runs to 2023 but for weeks there has been speculation that Bobic is Hertha Berlin’s preferred candidate to succeed sacked sporting director Michael PreetzShould Bobic leave, Frankfurt would be facing a major shakeup in its management team as it has already been announced that sporting director Bruno Hübner will be leaving the club in the summer. 

Kramer unveiled as new Bielefeld coach

The day after sacking Uwe Neuhaus, the man who got Arminia Bielefeld promoted last season, the club have moved to sign on Frank Kramer as his replacement.

Kramer, 48, has recently coached a number of Germany’s youth teams and had short stints as head coach of Fortuna Düsseldorf (2015) and Greuther Fürth (2013-15). 

“Frank is a multi-faceted coach with a wealth of experience in the professional and youth sectors. We are convinced that with his professional and analytical qualities, he is the type of coach that fits the Arminia path and that we need for the next development steps,” said sporting director Samir Arabi.

Bielefeld currently sit in 16th, the relegation playoff spot, and host Union Berlin on Sunday.

March 1

Arminia Bielefeld sack coach Uwe Neuhaus 

Bundesliga club Arminia Bielefeld have sacked head coach Uwe Neuhaus. Media reports said the decision had been taken at a joint meeting of the club’s management and supervisory board on Monday. 

The move comes two days after the newly promoted club’s 3-0 defeat to Borussia Dortmund, the latest setback in a run of five games in which Bielefeld had secured but a single point.  

Neuhaus led the club to promotion last season but Bielefeld’s sporting director Samir Arabi said the decision was made to boost their survival chances.

“We feel the team has the quality to achieve our goal but given the current situation we decided we had to act now,” Arabi said.

On Tuesday the club named 48-year-old Frank Kramer as Neuhaus’ successor.

Formula 1 rejects Bahrain vaccine proposal

An offer from Bahrain to vaccinate all Formula 1 personnel in preseason has been turned down by the organization.

The Gulf State made the offer as part of its vaccination rollout but, with the majority of F1 teams based in the UK, the sport said it would prefer to wait for vaccinations from that country.

Stefano Domenicali, F1 president, said this earlier month: “The priority is the most vulnerable. We don’t want to jump the line of vaccination.”

Preseason testing starts in Bahrain later this month ahead of the opening race weekend on March 28.

Golfers offer support for Woods after crash

Tiger Woods received support from his fellow professsionals after his serious car crash last week.

Players wore red shirts and black pants in the final round of the World Golf Championships, and other events, over the weekend, the outfit Woods always wore during his final rounds.

“It is hard to explain how touching today was when I turned on the tv and saw all the red shirts,” Woods tweeted on Sunday. “To every golfer and every fan, you are truly helping me get through this tough time.”

  • Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Child prodigy

    At just six months old, the young Tiger Woods was reportedly able to copy his dad’s golf swings. Eighteen months later, he’d made his first appearance on TV. By the age of 13, he’d become close to a household name, featuring on all the major networks in the US. He was also picking up just about every trophy in the junior ranks.

  • Tiger Woodsafter his first tournament win as a professional in 1996 (picture alliance/AP/L. McLendon)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Turning pro

    The American turned pro at 20 after picking up a trio US Amatuer titles and, true to form, wasted no time making his mark. Just two months after becoming a professional in 1996, he was picking up his first PGA Tour win at the Las Vegas Invitational.

  • Nick Faldo hands the green jacket to Tiger Woods (Imago/UPI Photo)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Master of the Majors

    If the win in Vegas was a milestone, this was the moment Woods really arrived on the global stage. At 21, he became the youngest man ever to win at Augusta and picked up the famous green jacket. He’d go on to win the Masters three more times, with his current major championship tally standing at 14.

  • Tiger Woods celebrates victory at Augusta (picture-alliance/dpa/R. Sullivan)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    The Grand Slam

    April 8, 2001 was arguably the most remarkable day of an astounding career. Again it came at Augusta as Woods picked up a second Masters win. Impressive as that is, that win also mean he held all four major titles at once, something no other golfer has managed.

  • Tiger Woods with Elin Nordegren before they married (picture-alliance/dpa/K. Ludbrook)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Pairing up

    In October 2004, Woods married Swedish model Elin Nordegren after he met her through fellow golfer Jesper Parnevik, for whom Nordegren worked as a nanny. The pair tied the knot in Barbados and had a son named Charlie Axel and a daugher named Sam together.

  • Tiger Wood (picture alliance/dpa/Florida Highway Patrol)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Accident causes all sorts of damage

    Throughout his career up to this point in 2009, Woods had always maintained a squeaky clean image. But in the wake of allegations of multiple affairs, he crashed his car in to a fire hydrant, a tree and some hedges outside his Florida mansion. The subsequent days, weeks and months saw him pull out of tournaments, lose several lucrative sponsorship deals and his marriage ended in 2010.

  • BG Sport Tiger Woods - Sieg 2013 Bridgestone Invitational (picture alliance/AP Photo/P. Long)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    The title that looked like the last

    The Bridgestone Invitational at the Firestone Country Clum in Akron, Ohio is far from the most prestigious of tournaments. But this 2013 win was Woods’ 79th on the PGA Tour and, for a long time, it looked like it would be his last.

  • Tiger Woods at the 2015 Masters (picture-alliance/dpa/Andrew Gombert)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Not ready for the comeback

    After missing the Masters for the first time in his career in 2014, Woods returned to Augusta a year later. But it wasn’t the comeback he’d hoped for. Woods looked out of sorts and was clearly struggling with the back injuries that would eventually require several operations and a lot of recovery time.

  • Tiger Woods was arrested near his Florida home (picture-alliance/dpa/AP/Palm Beach County Sheriff's office)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    The low point

    In the early hours of the morning, again not far from his Florida home, Woods was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs after falling asleep at the wheel in a traffic lance with the engine running. Woods initially blamed it on prescription drugs and later pleaded guilty to reckless driving, was fined and banned from drinking alcohol for the year that he’s under probation.

  • Tiger Woods picked up his first win for five years in 2018 (Reuters/J. D. Mercer)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    First win in five years

    After making his way back from nearly two years out injured and position 1199 on the world ranking list, Woods finally got his hands on some silverware again after five long years, winning the Tour Championship in September, 2018. “I just can’t believe I pulled this off,” the 42-year-old said. “I was having a hard time not crying coming up to the last hole.”

  • Golfprofi Tiger Woods beim Masters in Augusta (Getty Images/A. Redington)

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Back at the top

    Woods’ remarkable comeback was complete when he sealed an unexpected win at the 2019 Masters. Having kept himself in contention, Woods stayed calmed on the final day when others didn’t and sealed his first major in 11 years, and his first Masters in 14 years. He finished 13-under par, winning by one shot over a trio of chasers. It was Woods’ 15th major title and perhaps the greatest of them all.

  • USA I Tiger Woods I Unfall

    Tiger Woods: Incredible career ended by car crash?

    Career-ending crash?

    On February 23, 2021, Tiger Woods’ car went off the road in a Los Angeles suburb, rollling several times. He subsequently underwent surgery to repair what doctors described as “significant orthopaedic injuries” to his lower right leg and ankle. According to police, the golfer did not appear to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the early-morning incident.

    Author: Chuck Penfold