Monday, 12th December
eSports in Bali
The 14th eSports World Championship concluded today with the closing ceremony at Indonesia's most famous tourist spot. For over ten days Bali swapped surfing for the world's best experts at electronic games. Kazakhstan set the tone by becoming the PUBG world champions. The home nation did not disappoint taking the Dota 2 crown, while the CD:GO Female Tournament champions are Poland. Tekken 7 fans were ecstatic as this year's champions are Pakistan. North Macedonia became the CS:GO world champions as they bulldozed their way past Mongolia. Indonesia then proceeded with their second world title claiming eFootball, and to crown it further, became the Mobile Legends: Bang Bang world champions.
The UCI Track Champions League concluded in London with the Endurance titles going to Switzerland's Claudio Imhof and USA's Jennifer Valente. The Sprint king and queen are Australia's rising star Matthew Richardson and France's Mathilde Gros. Staying with cycling and on this occasion BMX, Australia's famous Gold Coast hosted the UCI BMX Freestyle World Cup - Park. China's Jiaqi Sun and local star Logan Martin claimed the elite titles.
Dumfries in Scotland hosted an important qualifying event in curling. It was Austria, Netherlands, Spain, and Turkey who all qualified for the World Mixed Doubles Curling Championship 2023. The County Antrim Indoor Bowls Club in Northern Ireland hosted the Bowls World Junior Indoor Championships. The Mixed Pairs champions are England's Ruby Hill and Harry Goodwin. The Singles champions are Australia's Brianna Smith and Harry Goodwin with his second title.
The IBU Biathlon World Cup spent the weekend at Hochfilzen in Austria. Sprint wins went to Germany's Denise Herrmann-Wick and Norway's unstoppable Johannes Thingnes Boe. France's Julia Simon and Boe claimed Pursuit, while both athletes helped their nations to the Relay titles.
The International Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation hosted the Push World Championships in Lake Placid, a famous ski resort in Essex County, New York. China's Yin Zheng and USA's Ro Mystique won the men's and women's skeleton titles. Germany's Lisa Buckwitz is the Women's Monobob champion, while the 2-man Bobsleigh champions are USA's Kristopher Horn and Adrian Adams. It was Lisa Buckwitz again and compatriot Neele Schuten claiming the 2-woman Bobsleigh. Horn and Adams, together with Manteo Mitchell and Martin Christofferson, took the 4-man Bobsleigh title.
We are deep into the snow sport season with Val Thorens in France hosting a Freestyle World Cup. Sweden's Sandra Naeslund and Austria's Mathias Graf are the Ski Cross champions. We had Snowboard Big Air in Edmonton, Canada. Titles went to Canada's Jasmine Baird and Australia's Valentino Guseli. The best ski jumpers were in Titisee Neustadt in Germany for the HS142 World Cup, with local star Katharina Althaus and Poland's Dawid Kubacki claiming the titles. Austria are the team champions. We had Freestyle Moguls at Idre Fjäll, Sweden, with titles going to New Zealand's Jakara Anthony and USA's Nick Page. USA's Elizabeth Lemley and Canada's Mikael Kingsbury won Dual Moguls.
Cross-Country skiers were in Beitostolen, Norway. The Sprint Classic champions are Switzerland's Nadine Faehndrich and France's Richard Jouve. Finland's Kerttu Niskanen and Norway's Paal Golberg won the 10km Individual Start Classic, while Norway claimed the 4x5km Relay Classic. Alpine World Cups featured in two locations. In Sestriere, Italy, the Slalom titles were captured by Switzerland's Wendy Holdener and Giant Slalom by local star Marta Bassino. The men were in France's Val d'Isere with Norway's Lucas Braathen winning Slalom and Giant Slalom going to Switzerland's Marco Odermatt. Winterberg in Germany hosted Snowboard Parallel Slalom with titles claimed by Austria's Sabine Schoeffmann and Alexander Payer.
At the ISU Figure Skating Grand Final in Torino, it was Japan's Riku Miaru and Ryuichi Kihara who made history by winning gold, their nation's first at this event. Canada's Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier won the Ice Dance title. In Short Track Skating, Belgium's Hanne Desmet captured her first senior gold medal in the 1500m final. Over thirty titles were claimed at the 2022 International Weightlifting Federation Masters World Championships held in Orlando, Florida, with China and Thailand the standout achievers.
Whistler in Canada hosted the next stage of the FIL Luge World Cup. Singles titles were claimed by Austria's Madeleine Egle and Germany's Felix Loch. Italy's Andrea Vötter and Marion Oberhofer won the Women's Doubles, with the men's title going to Germany's Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken. Germany also won the Team Relay World Cup.
At the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, Stetson Wright capped an epic season winning both the All-Around and Bull Riding titles. Wright also set a new record for single-season earnings. The Milford Utah cowboy now has seven career world championships. South Korea's Myung Woo Cho became a new superstar in carom billiards as he claimed the UMB World Cup held in Cairo. Austria's men and Germany's women captured gold in the Eurohockey Indoor Championship held in Hamburg.
Muelheim an der Ruhr in Germany hosted the World DanceSport Federation Adult Latin World Championships. Marius-Andrei Balan and Khrystyna Moshenska (GER) won gold, while compatriots Artur Balandin and Anna Salita claimed Show Dance Latin. China's GM Tan Zhongyi won the Women's Candidates Tournament Pool B, a FIDE challenger chess tournament for the World Championship. USA are the team champions of the ISA World Para Surfing Championship held in Pismo Beach, California.
Taiwan has defended their title against the Czech Republic at the II WBSC U-12 Softball World Cup. In cricket news, Pakistan's debutant Abrar Ahmed became the only bowler for his nation to have taken five wickets in their very first session of Test cricket. The match was against England in Pakistan. Over in Bangladesh, India's Ishan Kishan hit the fastest ODI double-century. Kishan took just 126 balls to reach 200. Norway's Jakob Ingebrigtsen and compatriot Karoline Bjerkli Grovdal retained their European Cross Country Running Championship titles in Turin, Italy.
At the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, Morocco have become the first African nation to reach the semi-finals. They will face current world champions France on Wednesday, while Argentina will play Croatia on Tuesday. The final is on Sunday. In the NFL, Tom Brady led a fourth-quarter comeback win for a record 44th time in his career. Tampa Bay went on to beat New Orleans Saints by 17-16. Dublin hosted the next round of the UCI Cyclo-Cross World Cup. The Netherland's Fem van Empel and Belgium's Wout van Aert continued their good form by claiming the titles. At the World Rugby Sevens Series in Cape Town, New Zealand's women and Samoa's men are the champions.
Finally, golfers will be encouraged by South Africa's Ockie Strydom who finally claimed his first win on the DP World Tour after previously achieving 19 second places. The 37-year-old won the Alfred Dunhill Championship in South Africa by two shots from Spain's Adrian Otaegui.
Until next time, have a great week in sport.