In Charge of Sport
Sport events in Opava are managed by the Deparment of Education at the Municipal Authority of Opava. The department is in charge of:
- overview of sports events in town
- promotion of events published in the city bulletin Hláska, on the city website, and on social networks
- information about grants
- sports events Opavské vánočky, presents for children in Opava, sister cities sports day, cooperation with elementary schools
Opava supports a number of sports events, which can be viewed in the list of events.
There are many organizers of sports events in Opava. The contact list is available in the database of sports subjects.
History of Sport in Opava (until 1989)
The first reference to sport in Opava dates back to mid-19th century when an ice rink was built in the place of the town fortification moats, today’s winter stadium. The German skating association Troppauer Eislaufverein founded in 1868 organized top-level skating competitions. The association organized two European and one World Championship in figure skating. Among other sports association founded in the 19th century belong the cycling association Schlesischer Radfahrer established in 1884, and the Czech horse riding association Přemysl founded in 1888.
A pioneer of Czech sport in the predominantly German Opava was the association Sokol. The local branch of Sokol was established in 1884 thanks to Jan Zacpal and Jan Kolofík, who became the first manager of Sokol in Opava. In 1890 Sokol found its first space for regular meetings in Opava in Filípek’s Yard in Opava-Kateřinky. Football and hockey became popular in Opava at the beginning of the 20th century. The football club Troppauer Fussballverein was founded in 1907. The manager of the club was the imperial councillor Karl Dorasil, which proves its importance and prestige. The first hockey club in Opava was established in 1908. After decline during World War I, sport in Opava started to flourish again. The restored Sokol got hold of the sand quarry in Kylešovice and in 1926 the first stadium opened in Opava under the name Tyrš Stadium. The most significant sportsman of the inter-war period was Wolfgang Dorasil, defender in the hockey team Troppauer Eislaufverein. The sports activities in Opava were unified after World War II into two large unions - TJ Slezan Opava and TJ Ostroj Opava.
Sport in Opava Today (after 1989)
The first impulse to the sports euphoria in Opava was the rise of the local football club to premiere league. Although the history of football in Opava dates back to the beginning of the 20th century, it was only in spring 1995 when FC Kaučuk entered the elite club.
The football stadium in the City Gardens became instantly more popular reaching one of the highest attendances at matches in the country. The “Opava pot” was renowned throughout the league. The team got to sixth place in the premiere league and won over best teams of the time.
The stadium was reconstructed in 2003, twenty years after it had been built. Premier league matches can be played there.
Many top players started their carreer in Opava: Baránek, Barteska, Nezmar, Kučera, Zbyněk Pospěch, Zdeněk Pospěch, or Sedláček. New talents have joined Silesian FC youth club.
The hockey team with players Fabián, Flašar, Haas, and Římský entered the first league in 1996. Three years later the licence was sold to Havířov and since then the Opava hockey team has belonged to the second league. However, youth teams are successful, especially the female club, which has won the national championship three times. The goalkeeper Lhotská is a member of the national team.
Despite the lack of first league hockey in Opava, there are many talents who started their career here: the Czechoslovak national team members Valášek, Elbl, or Uvíra, the French team member Dostál, the Olympic champion from Nagano Moravec, or NHL players Bonk and Klesla. In 1976 the Opava stadium hosted European Junior Championship.
The basketball club in Opava fought its way from the third to first league. In their first season the team won the national championship and gained nationwide fame. The team has become the national champion four times, won the Czech Cup five times, twice it came second and once third. At the turn of the century the team made Opava the centre of attention of basketball experts and thousands of fans. The team, which was made famous by the players Czudek, Havlík, Klapetek, and Stuchlý, or coaches Kozák and Hummerl, inspired the construction of a modern multi-purpose sports hall in the City Gardens.
In 2003 the voleyball club joined the sports elite too. The team of VK Ostroj with the veterans Palinka, Demar, Goga or Kvapil advanced to the first legaue and won a bronze medal in the championship in their first year. Similarly to basketball, the thunderous atmosphere during matches drew attention and Opava started to host national championships.
Opava attracts also beach volleyball. The volleyball courts in Kolofíkovo riverfront host at least one national tournament every year. The most significant sports event held in Opava is the bodybuilding championship Grand Prix PEPA.
In 2002 a hockeyball pitch was built in Kylešovice. Today there are twelve hockeyball teams in Opava. The Riding Club in Kateřinky organizes attractive competitions in show jumping and dressage. The rider Karel Lamich with his horse Credit is one of the top show jumpers in the country.
Another popular sport in Opava is canoeing. The junior members of the Canoe Club belong among the top players in the world, as evidenced by awards from world and Europe championships won by Slováková and Fuchsík. The first wild water artificial channel in Moravia and Silesia was built on the river Opava by the Military Weir.
Other sports club in Opava organize national competitions with varying results. Among successful sportsmen in Opava belong the triathlete Berková, cross bower Losert, walker Malysa, grass skier Gardavská, and many others.