Friday, 10 June 2022

Sunset Sports Media Festival Welcomes International Sports Stars in Zadar

June 10, 2022 - The greatest professionals in the world of sports will spend the next two days in Zadar at the SUNSET Sports Media Festival, which was officially opened on Thursday night at the Punta Skala Hotel in Petrčane.

SUNSET Sports Media Festival is a project that will set new standards in the organization of sports business events, and the participants of the festival are the world's biggest faces in the world of sports and sports production, writes  Zadarski.hr 

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Italian sports journalist Giulia Diletta Leotta. (Photo: Sime Zelic/PIXSELL)

One of the most famous sports journalists in the world, Italian Giulia Diletta Leotta, arrived in Zadar for the festival. With her commitment to the life of a reporter, which is closely related to her other love - sports, Diletta inspires many women, but also people around her, so we can often see her professionally and passionately reporting from the football field.

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Peter Schmeichel, Ray Lewis, Julian Edelman, Stephen Espinoza, and Damjan Rudez. (Photo: Milan Sabic/PIXSELL)

Former goalkeeper of the Danish national football team Peter Schmeichel, legendary American football players Julian Edelman and Ray Lewis, and producer and director Pete Radovich, famous Zadar man with an American address and winner of more than 40 Emmy awards who is also the ambassador of the first SUNSET Sports Media Festival.

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Sports media producer and director Pete Radovich. (Photo: Sime Zelic/PIXSELL)

''Zadar is a sports city and there is no better location for the Sunset Sports Media Festival than this one. Whether you work in sports production or not, it will certainly be interesting to learn from the most famous people in this business and find out why they make the decisions they make. The most important thing about the whole festival is to find out what modern technology in sports is now available. Although some visitors are not in sports production, this is a great opportunity to learn from those who are.'', said Pete Radovich, adding that the stars of the SSMF festival, despite the rain that fell on the first day of the festival, were delighted with the city of Zadar.

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Friday, 2 July 2021

Highlights of the Week: 5 Big Events in Croatia from June 28-July 4

June 3, 2021 - TCN's highlights of the week. A look at the events in Croatia from June 28 through the selection of TCN's reporter Ivor Kruljac.

EURO 2020 elimination and Dario Šarić in the NBA finals. Zagreb witnessing a series of arrests related to corruption of Milan Bandić's reign and explosive device planted in Split. In the midst of it all, is COVID-19 vaccination on its way to becoming obligatory and not optional? You may prefer the good news or the bad news, but here is both, as another week in Croatia comes to an end.

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© Marin Tironi / PIXSELL

Highlights of the week: Uskok arresting Zagreb entrepreneurs and associates of former mayor Milan Bandić

The Office of Zagreb Mayor Tomislav Tomašević said on Wednesday that a preliminary investigation by members of the Office of the Chief State Prosecutor and the Office for Suppression of Corruption and Organised Crime (USKOK) started at the city administration offices at 6 am on Wednesday.

As TCN wrote, several people were arrested on suspicion of corruption, including the director-general of the HRT public broadcaster, Kazimir Bačić, Andrea Šulentić, and Ana Stavljenić-Rukavina. Both Šulentić and Rukavina were directors in Zagreb administration offices and close associates of former mayor Milan bandić. At the same time, details Bandić's heavy corruption (suspected and known publicly earlier) came to light.

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© Goran Stanzl / PIXSELL

Highlights of the week: Croatia eliminated from Euro 2020 after losing to Spain

Croatia and Spain met in Copenhagen on Monday for their EURO 2020 round of 16 match. It was a decent effort from Croatia, but not enough. Despite the Spain own goal in the 20th minute, the distraction as Rebić went to change his boots saw Spain even the score. The score towards the end of regular time went to 3:1 for Spain, but Croatia managed to lower to 3:2 and finally, in the added time, Pašalić scored for 3:3.

But, the euphoria was ruined for Croatia as in extra time, Morata earned Spain 4:3, and by 103rd minute, the total and final score was 5:3 for Spain. It was one of the more intense games on Euro so far as both teams show incredible spirit and persistence. 

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© Dusko Jaramaz / PIXSELL

Highlights of the week: Opposition parties against vaccination being required for job-keeping payments  

The Social Democratic Party (SDP) called on Prime Minister Andrej Plenković on Thursday not to make vaccination a requirement for job-keeping payments, while the Most party said business owners were being blackmailed into vaccination.

As TCN reported, SDP leader Peđa Grbin elaborated his dissatisfaction via social networks.

"In Croatia, mandatory vaccination is possible, but the obligation is first established under the law on the protection of the population and then regulated and worked out under Immunisation Rules and the Mandatory Vaccination Programme. The obligation of vaccination can't be imposed in another way, notably not by linking support for entrepreneurs with vaccination," SDP president Grbin posted on Facebook.

"Most is against entrepreneurs, who are being forced into vaccination through blackmail, saving the government's mindless epidemic policy", stated the Most party on its official Twitter account. They added that Croatia was stuck with over 300,000 surplus vaccines because of poor government moves and communication omissions.

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© Hrvoje Jelavic / PIXSELL

Highlights of the week: Dario Šarić becomes 5th Croatian basketballer in the NBA finals

Šibenik's Dario Šarić is the 5th Croatian basketball player to reach the NBA finals! As TCN wrote, Šarić became only the fifth Croatian basketball player in the NBA league finals, joining the company of Dražen Petrović, Toni Kukoč, Žan Tabak, and Ante Žižić. Šarić plays for Phoenix Suns. They topped the Los Angeles Clippers 4-2 in the NBA Western Conference Finals. Apart from basketball, Šarić also likes to enjoy sipping coffee on Šibenik cafe terraces, as portrayed in the photo. 

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© Milan Sabic / PIXSELL

Highlights of the week: Bomb planted in Split. One person injured
In the night from Thursday to Friday, an unknown person placed an explosive device underneath a vehicle. The explosion damaged six cars, and one person required medical attention. The investigation is ongoing since Friday morning.  

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Friday, 7 May 2021

Highlights of the Week: 5 Big Events in Croatia from May 3-9, 2021

May 7, 2021 - TCN's regular retrospect of Highlights of the week, through the selection of TCN's reporter Ivor Kruljac. 

President Milanović loved by locals in Plaški. Firefighters quickly reacted to the fire in Zagreb recycle yard. Pula celebrated its liberation while Šibenik received new doses of coronavirus vaccines. Dinamo and Hajduk end their match in a tie. Overall another interesting week in Croatia, and here are more details on all highlights.

 Highlights of the week: President Milanović loved in Plaški county

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© Kristina Stedul Fabac/ PIXSELL

Croatian president Zoran Milanović visited Plaški county near Ogulin on Tuesday to visit the newly-build Firefighter's home and Plaški Culture Home. The locals welcomed president Milanović with ovations, and many use the opportunity to handshake and take a photo with the president. As Večernji List reports, Milanović took the visit as an opportunity to comment on the hate speech incident at Borovo Selo. He stated that the President of Serbian National Council Milorad Pupovac and Croatian Prime Minister „should use the police, but they don't, they are causing incidents.

Highlights of the Week: Pula celebrating its liberation in WW2

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© Srecko Niketic/ PIXSELL

Pula celebrated its annual liberation day and the Pula City Day, marked on May 5. In Tito's park, the traditional commemoration to the fallen WW2 soldiers of Tito's partisan army saw Tiziano Sošić (president of Pula City Council), Elena Puh Belci (vice mayor of Pula), Aleksandar Matić (chief of the City of Pula Office) and Fabrizio Radin (vice-county ruler of Istria county) paid their respects. Representatives of associations of anti-fascist fighters and anti-fascist of the city of Pula were present too. 

 Highlights of the Week: Dinamo and Hajduk end with an even score 1:1

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© Milan Sabic/ PIXSELL

Hajduk and Dinamo's eternal opponents played another game at Hajduk's home of Poljud Stadium in Split on Wednesday. The match was the 22nd round in Croatian First League, and fans couldn't wait for it as the game was postponed.

Hajduk opened the match well and had a chance to take the lead in the first 20 seconds. Kačaniklić received an excellent long ball and ran on the right side. He rushed into the penalty area and shot diagonally, but Livaković came out and closed his corner. Dinamo improved and took the lead in the 16th minute with a goal by Majer, and Livaja returned the favor in the 44th minute. Diamantakos hit the crossbar in the final minutes of the match but without success.

After three victories in the previous three clashes with Hajduk this season, Dinamo failed to achieve maximum performance and almost mathematically secured the title but entered the last four rounds with a seven-point advantage over Osijek. The fail happened despite Dinamo facing Hajduk with the strongest possible lineup.  

Highlights of the Week: Vaccination in Šibenik continues successfully

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© Hrvoje Jelavic/ PIXSELL

Larger quantities of vaccines came to Šibenik on Friday, allowing vaccination in Baldeki Sports Hall to go without problems for the second day in the row. The vaccination attracts a number of citizens, so the area got quite crowded.

Highlights of the Week: Recycling yard in Zagreb on fire, reasons unclear

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© Matija Habljak/ PIXSELL

Zagreb's recycling yard, located on Sarajevska Cesta in Novi Zagreb, was victimized by fire but quickly localized and put under control on Tuesday. The fire caught four containers, and 21 firefighters with six fire trucks rushed to the field. Police investigated the cause of the fire, but the reason is, for the moment, unknown. Firefighters managed to operate despite the lack of hydrants, and the thick white smoke was noticed by citizens who live in the buildings close to the yard, reported Večernji List. 

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Tuesday, 13 April 2021

World's Most Unique MTB Race Prepares For New Edition: Mitas Adria 4 Islands

April 13, 2021 - The Mitas Adria 4 Islands race in Kvarner is one of Europe’s best mountain cycling tournaments and it is ready for its new edition, to take place next week from April 20 to 24, 2021.

As htz.hr reports, beautiful and picturesque landscapes and great organization have put this race on the calendar of many MTB enthusiasts, which is not surprising since the 4 Islands race in Croatia was declared one of the best in Europe.

This is the sixth edition of this unique MTB race in Kvarner, which has so far been attended by almost 2,000 fans and MTB fans. This year, from April 20 to 24, 2021, contestants will drive again along all four Kvarner islands: Krk, Rab, Cres, and Lošinj.

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Credits: 4 Islands MTB

The entry list for the 2020/21 edition has already been confirmed and you can find it here.

Competitors will cover a total of 270 kilometers of track through these four stages and achieve over 5,000 meters of altitude ascent. The race is intended for all-mountain bikers, especially those who are looking forward to the early opening of the season and the beginning of collecting points - UCI scoring in the S1 category, which means that race competitors collect points for their national teams to participate in the Olympics.

More information about the tournament, accommodation, volunteering, or how to get there can be found on 4 Islands' official website.

All you need to know about cycling in Croatia can be found on our dedicated Total Croatia page.

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Thursday, 4 February 2021

World Class: New Dubrovnik Sports Hall For 2025 World Handball Comp

February 4, 2020 – The new Dubrovnik Sports Hall will have world-class facilities and be multifunctional, capable of holding cultural events as well as sports. It will be completed in time for the city joint hosting the 2025 World Handball Championship

The City of Dubrovnik has revealed plans for a new world-class Dubrovnik sports hall. The venue will have ultra-modern facilities and will be a multifunctional space, allowing it to be also used for cultural events such as music concerts. The city will apply for European funds to help pay for the new Dubrovnik sports hall.

In February 2020 it was announced that Dubrovnik would be one of the hosts of the World Handball Championship in 2025. The announcement and impending visit of the competition is the impetus for launching the project of the new Dubrovnik sports hall. Croatia is one of three countries - alongside Denmark and Norway - that will jointly host the World Handball Championships in 2025. 

The new Dubrovnik sports hall is planned as a multifunctional sports and congress hall and cultural centre, which will sit next to the existing sports hall in Gospino polje. The old hall and the new Dubrovnik sports hall will be connected, creating a venue capable of holding some 4200 spectators. It will be a complex containing three handball courts for competition or recreation, alternatively to be used as a congress hall or for music concerts, at which the capacity would be 4000 guests.

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Plans for the new Dubrovnik sports hall were presented jointly by Mayor Mato Franković, Head of the Administrative Department for European Funds, Regional and International Cooperation Zrinka Raguž and Director of the Sports Facilities Dubrovnik Lukša Klaić. The city aims to obtain building permits by the end of 2021 and complete construction by the end of 2024.

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Thursday, 14 January 2021

Can Istria Become a Leading Sports Tourism Destination?

January 13, 2021 – Given the developed sports and accommodation infrastructure, as well as the organization and sports tradition, does Istria have the potential to become the leading sports tourism destination in the southern part of Europe?

With cities that regularly count the highest numbers of tourist overnight stays each year, Istria has been a top tourist destination for a long time. After a recent endeavor to brand Istria as an attractive region for top IT professionals, Istria is also promoted as a favorable sports tourism destination.

Favorable climate, vicinity to Europe

According to Glas Istre, due to its favorable position, mild climate, and developed sports infrastructure and tradition, Istrian cities on the west coast are often hosting many international clubs and national teams that come to the preparations and camps.

For example, the Croatia national handball team recently made preparations for the 2021 World Handball Championship in the Istrian city of Poreč. Their coach Lino Červar said two years ago that the national team in Poreč feels at home.

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Football fields in Medulin / Gat travel agency

Comparative advantages of Istria, such as the proximity of major European cities and favorable climate in the winter months, give it a unique opportunity to compete with other warmer destinations, such as the famous Antalya in Turkey, one of the most attractive sports tourism destinations. However, it is necessary to use those advantages, adequately adjust the infrastructure, and increase and improve the offer.

The corona crisis has certainly benefited Istria, which has logically imposed itself as the best option for sports clubs' semi-seasonal winter preparations. However, once the corona crisis becomes a thing of the past and the borders open, the question is whether Istria can compete with the best.

Well-known Istrian sports destinations - Medulin, Pula, Porec, Rovinj, and Umag

Football fields near the Belvedere Hotel in Medulin traditionally attract football clubs. All six football fields are 100 to a maximum of 500 meters apart. About 200 clubs from all over Europe pass through Medulin annually, and this year it was chosen by the football clubs Lokomotiva, Šibenik, Međimurje, Slaven Belupo, Gorica, and domestic Istria 1961.

Apart from Medulin, sports tourism also thrives in the four largest Istrian cities – Pula, Poreč, Rovinj, and Umag, which also generate the largest tourist traffic. The famous Poreč sports hall Žatika, one of six halls in the city, was built for the 2009 World Handball Championship in Croatia, and as a result of many years of investment in sports, a football camp will soon be built in Poreč.

Currently, football clubs Rijeka, Slovačko from the Czech Republic, Budafoki MTE from Hungary, and Sturm Graz from Austria are preparing in Umag. The City of Umag says that they have been continuously working on raising the quality of football fields for years, especially in the Stella Maris sports center.

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Tennis center Stella Maris in Umag / Copyright Romulić and Stojčić

Umag is already recognized as a base for the winter preparations of many European first leaguers. The current situation with the coronavirus has only further increased the number of inquiries from foreign football clubs. By the end of February, numerous first-league and second-league clubs are expected to spend their winter preparations in Umag, culminating in a series of traditional Umag Trophy youth football tournaments, for which Juventus and Bayern Münich have already confirmed the arrival.

"We have recognized all the comparative advantages of Istria. Ten years ago, we decided to develop this type of tourism, together with the Umag Tourist Board and the hotel company Plava Laguna. We notice that the potential is much greater than what we can currently satisfy with the existing infrastructure, so the sports center and additional fields are also planned," they say from the City of Umag.

Marko Kuže: Rovinj is Dinamo's winter base

Dinamo and Osijek football clubs are currently preparing in Rovinj. It seems that the corona crisis, in this case, was not crucial given that the clubs of the first Croatian football league, as well as the Croatian national football team, chose Rovinj in previous years.

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Rovinj / Copyright Romulić and Stojčić

When asked whether Rovinj can compete specifically with Turkey, the City reminds that Dinamo players declared themselves on this issue last year. They said that, given the quality of the terrain and accommodation, Rovinj is no weaker than Turkey, where they had the opportunity to make preparations before. Last year, the conditions offered by Rovinj were praised by the then Dinamo coach Nenad Bjelica, who returned here this year to prepare with the Football club Osijek.

Marko Kuže, technical director of Dinamo, says that in Rovinj, the conditions for preparations are excellent, from accommodation to the training ground.

"On behalf of the club, staff, and players, I must express my satisfaction with the hospitality. We are always pleasantly welcomed here, and this is very important in choosing a location for such a serious work process as preparations. Considering that Rovinj is already Dinamo's winter base, we have a good experience this year. There was no need to look for a location for preparations outside of Croatia because we have everything here. We see that other teams have preparations in Istria, which is also very good for domestic tourism," says Kuže.

Thursday, 3 September 2020

Ministry of Tourism and Sports to Invest in Construction of 23 Sports Venues

ZAGREB, September 3, 2020 - The Ministry of Tourism and Sports plans to invest almost HRK 10 million this year to co-finance the construction or refurbishment of 23 sports venues throughout Croatia following a call for applications advertised on 31 December 2019, the ministry said on Thursday.

Despite the circumstances caused by the coronavirus pandemic, this year the ministry will co-finance the reconstruction and construction of sports venues from Dubrovnik to Vukovar in an effort to support local communities and maintain sports infrastructure.

The total amount to be granted is HRK 9,684,096.64.

Since 2018 the reconstruction or construction of 25 sports venues has been conducted including the largest project to build an athletics track in Knin.

The Ministry of Tourism and Sports, which previously was in the remit of the State Central Office for Sport, has invested a total of HRK 21,292,575.70  and with this latest call for applications the investments will amount to HRK 30,976,672.60, the ministry said.

 

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Sunday, 15 March 2020

"Sports Infrastructure is Biggest Hurdle in Development of Sports Tourism in Croatia"

March 15, 2020 - A significant investment in the offer and quality sports infrastructure are prerequisites for the development of sports tourism in Croatia. 

HRTurizam reports that this could be heard from the participants of the 15th Tourism Discussion on the topic "Sports tourism in Croatia - can we do more and how?". It was attended by Tonči Glavina, State Secretary at the Ministry of Tourism, Zlatko Matesa, President of the Croatian Olympic Committee (HOO), Goran Šprem from Uniline, Tomislav Popović, President of the Maistra Management Board, and Sanda Čorak, Research Associate at the Institute for Tourism.

Panelists stressed that the sports industry brings in 300 billion euros, or 2% of GDP in the European Union, while according to estimates in Croatia, it accounts for 1.4%. It is concluded that sports tourism can provide more revenue and extend the season, but it is a prerequisite to attract investment in sports infrastructure.

In this context, the participants highlighted Istria as one of the positive examples of a region where existing infrastructure enables and supports the development of this specific form of tourism. The four key areas where a shift can be made are heard: recreation, athlete preparation and various camps, the organization of major sporting events, as well as publicity involving successful Croatian athletes.

As a concrete project for the development of sports tourism in Croatia, Šprem emphasized the project "Croatia - Country of Sport", which aims to attract athletes from all over the world to prepare in Croatia and to improve Croatia's position on the map of sports destinations. During the discussion, one could hear that great potential lies in the use of European funds for the construction of sports infrastructure, which Croatia has not yet started to use, and highlighted the example of neighboring Slovenia, which has so far withdrawn 100 million euros from the funds for the development of this segment.

Recall, earlier this week, the city of Zagreb announced plans to demolish the existing Dinamo stadium in Maksimir and build a new one with 30,000 seats, with an auxiliary stadium of 3,000 - 4,000 seats, and athletic fields and various outdoor courts alongside the pool complex. Construction on the new stadium should begin in 2022.

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Thursday, 22 November 2018

Sports Croatia: A New Branding Project by Croatian National Tourist Board

On Monday, the Ministry of Tourism held the 42nd session of the Croatian National Tourist Board (HTZ) Tourist Council, whereby members of the Council presented the proposal for the annual work program of the Croatian National Tourist Board for 2019. At the session, a call for expressions of interest for the implementation of the ‘Sportska Hrvatska’ (Sports Croatia) project in 2019 and a proposal for a decision to form the Commission for Sports Croatia was issued.

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