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Banbury Cross

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Post details: The Magic of Nine

The Magic of Nine

Czechoslovakia, a country in which I was born, had exactly nine presidents: Masaryk, Benes, Hacha, Gottwald, Zapotocky, Novotny, Husak, Svoboda and Havel. And because that state formation no longer exists, it will stay that way. That is why I regard the number 9 as a sort of Czech number.

A Czech team hasn't participated in a World Soccer Championship since 1990. Last Fall the long absence from the most watched sporting event in this part of the Solar System finally ended in a dramatic play-off with Norway. The Czech Republic qualified as the very last team for the World Cup which this time is held in Germany, tantalizingly close to the Czech border. But the best part came when I looked at the tournament dates: June 9th to July 9th. Wooo-hooo... It felt like an episode from the Twilight Zone. This has got to mean something. With star players like Nedved, Cech, Koller and Rosicky, this has got to be our year! Even Yahoo!Sports published an article yesterday in which a computer simulation predicted the victory for the Czech team.

But life has spent considerable time teaching me one important lesson: good things always come unannounced. The moment you start expecting something - forget it, it is not going to happen. So I guess when we look at June 2006 ten years from now, we will fondly remember it as "that time when we all mistakenly thought we'd become the World's Champions in soccer".

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